*Checks reveal marketers make over N100 per liter
By Victor Ahiuma-Young
Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, has called on Nigerians to hold marketers responsible for the unending fuel scarcity across the country.
This came as Vanguard investigations revealed that marketers make not less than N100 a liter of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, commonly referred to as petrol.
According to Vanguard’s investigation, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, sells at N133 to Marketers. Many of them own depots. Plus or minus, from the Depot, the price rises to N148 per litre.
A source told Vanguard that “These Marketers are the major problem. They don’t import a single litre, they get the product on Credit from NNPC, yet they sell from their depots at N250 per litre making gains of more than N100 per litre.”
As if confirming the development, NUPENG in a statement yesterday by its President and General Secretary, Prince Williams Akporeha and Afolabi Olawale, among others said the “Union for the third time in the last 12 months is deeply constrained to raise concerns and worries over the pains Nigerians are going through to get Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS) for their daily businesses, movements, and wellbeing. We find this situation very appalling and shameful.
“We wish to let the general public know that the rank-and-file members of our Union deeply empathize with them and share in their pains.
To demonstrate our commitment to service, all our members in the supply chains of the Petroleum Products distribution from the workers at the depots, Petroleum Tanker Drivers and Petrol Stations Workers have since been placed on red alert to serve and they have been readily available and dutifully carrying out this onerous and patriotic task even at the risk of their lives due to the prevailing security challenges we are facing at this time.
“Even at the moment of this press release, seven of our members who are tanker drivers moving product from A.Y Shafa and some other deports from south-south to the Northern part of the country are hiding in the bushes of highway along Benin-Auchi-lokoja roads due to attacks by bandits and hoodlums. Leadership had however reached out to law enforcement Agents for rescue and protection.
“But more worrisome and biggest obstacle to the usual effective and patriotic services is the depressing and frustrating antics of some unscrupulous Marketers who are busy using this seemingly initial break-in logistics from offshore vessels to exploit and extort the hapless public through racketeering and hoarding of the product.
“Things are really getting out of control, and we urgently call on all concerned authorities to quickly stem this ugly trend.
“In the same manner, we wish to condemn this brutal exploitation of the masses by these Shylock Marketers in the strongest terms and we have resolved to commence sanctioning any Marketer we find to be indulging in this unwholesome and disgusting practices.
“Any Marketer selling above the approved ex-depot prices will have our Union to contend with henceforth while urging all our members in the distribution chain to remain steadfast and dedicated to serving our fatherland.
“We are aware there are some decent and patriotic Marketers who are willing and ready to do business in ways and manners that will not exploit and inflict pain on the public. We are therefore calling on sets of Marketers not to be discouraged or relent but to keep cooperating with the Union and other patriotic Stakeholders to help stem this ugly trend.
“We urge the government to also be sincere and make the product available in such quantities, ways and manners that will not give room for these unscrupulous elements to be holding our nation to ransom. The few wicked ones cannot and should not be allowed to overwhelm us.”
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