The Pipelines and Product Marketing Company (PPMC) has assured Nigerians that petrol queues seen at different service stations across the nation would have ceased before Christmas.
The Managing Director of the PPMC, Esther Nnamdi-Ogbe, gave the assurance on Monday, while listing efforts the company had made to ensure that the scarcity of petrol would end in the next few days.
She said that 800 litres of petrol had arrived in Nigeria but distribution had been hindered due to poor tracking of trucks.
“Going forward, if you are to pick products, we are going to add trackers to ensure that the products discharged at various deports get to the station.
“PPMC has sent 36 staff to every state capital because we saw that there is a gap in knowing what trucks are coming in, as we cannot rely on other agencies alone. We have to ensure the dispensing of those trucks as they arrive.
“This is done so that we can monitor the ones that are being diverted or sold in other places outside the stations.
“There have been instances in some states where they do not pay for products yet they are having products being sold. There has to be an explanation of how they got the products because they did not get it from us,” she said.
Nnamdi-Ogbe said that the PPMC was collaborating with the DPR to track trucks with electronic devices, saying that the situation was an emergency that has to be tackled as fast as possible.
Likely Diversion Of Products
The head of the subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, said that the PPMC had noticed that there were delays in movement of trucks from Lagos to Abuja, saying that some 857 trucks that left Lagos State on December 16 were just getting to Abuja, a journey that would have taken a maximum of two days for heavy duty trucks.
She told Channels Television that the PPMC was investigating the reason for the delay.
As a way of checking likely diversion of products, she said that the PPMC would make available to Nigerians list of trucks that should arrive at each state so that Nigerians could monitor the trucks.
The PPMC boss also pointed out that pipeline vandalism had contributed to the scarcity, as distribution through pipes to other state deports had been hampered by the activities of vandals.
“Pipelines are most efficient ways of distributing products. We have issues of vandalism.
“The pipelines have been an issue for a long time. We ought to have drones. We have had the pipelines being compromised perennially by vandals. We have to tackle the issue through different means.
“When the pipeline work there is tremor and people get to know that the pipeline is working.
“We have systematically looked at the issue with pipelines. Last year we lost billions to pipeline vandalism and oil theft.
“To check the activities of vandals, private individuals have been giving the contract to monitor pipelines in collaboration with the JTF,” she explained.
She reassured Nigerians that the PPMC was doing all it could to ensure that the scarcity would end in the next few days.
“We cannot fold our hands and watch this happen. We will track every trucks. We will not sit down and watch Nigerians face perennial suffering. Whatever it is, if it is a cartel, we will break it and this will be the last time it will happen,” Nnamdi-Ogbe emphasized.