June 23, 2009

Fuel marketers drag Edo govt to court

By Simon Ebegbulem

BENIN CITY – THE Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Edo state chapter, has dragged the state government to the High Court in Benin, over the recent inauguration of the Petroleum Monitoring Task Force by the state government.

In the originating summons made available to Vanguard in Benin City, today, the IPMAN is challenging the legality and constitutionality of setting up the Task Force, which was saddled with the responsibility of monitoring the selling, quality and movement of petroleum products in the state.

It would be recalled that following the artificial scarcity of petroleum products that occurs occasionally in the state, the state government decided to inaugurate the Task Force so as to check the excesses of the dealers who creates the artificial scarcities to exploit the people.

But the IPMAN described it as illegal and complained to the Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Consequently, in a letter dated 18th June, 2009, signed by one I.Olori, that was addressed to the chairman of the Task Force, Mr Amen Osunde, said the task force lacked the power to test flow meter pumps at filling stations and reminded that “item 65 of the Exclusive list of 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic vests exclusively, the duties of testing and measuring of flowmeter pumps on Weights and Measures Department of the Federal Ministry of Commerce and Industry”.