As NPA awaits two petrol-laden ships, others at Lagos ports
Major oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) has said the regulated N165 pump price for Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol, is no longer realistic.
Chairman, Mr. Olumide Adeosun, made this known during a virtual consumer protection workshop for oil marketers by the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) yesterday.
Adeosun, who was reacting to the lingering fuel scarcity across the country, blamed the situation on the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which has disrupted global energy supply distribution.
The MOMAN chairman likened the current situation to the COVID-19 pandemic era, with some countries moving to halt the exportation of petrol in favour of their own national energy securities.
He maintained that it would be difficult to enforce any kind of price control mechanism on marketers who have to slightly adjust their prices based on how much they bought products from the depots.
He said the way forward is phased deregulation of PMS by the Federal Government to reduce shock on consumers.
Adeosun said gradual price deregulation should be followed with targeted palliatives in areas of transportation and agricultural subsidies to the public to ease implementation.
He said a huge amount spent on petrol subsidy over the years would have been deployed to other critical areas that could have reduced the impact of the current energy crisis on Nigerians.
Adeosun empathised with Nigerians and the Federal Government who have been bearing the huge subsidy cost, adding that the government is working assiduously to mitigate the effects of the situation on the economy.
He said as the nation is moving towards full deregulation of the downstream petroleum sector, MOMAN would continue to collaborate with the FCCPC to ensure the protection of the rights of consumers.
Earlier, Executive Vice Chairman, FCCPC, Mr. Babatunde Irukera, charged oil marketers to shun anti-competitive conduct and other acts that could shortchange consumers.
Irukera (represented by Executive Commissioner, Operations, Mr. Adamu Abdullahi), reiterated the commission’s commitment to the protection of consumers from exploitation.
In his presentation, Mr. Ikem Isiekwena, a lawyer and Partner at Simmons Coopers, urged MOMAN to promote efficient health, environmental, safety and quality-related industry processes, in accordance with provisions of the FCCPC Act.
He also urged the marketers to liaise and coordinate with specific industry regulators and its members on consumer protection issues.
ALSO, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), yesterday, said two of the six ships waiting to berth at the port were carrying 149,985 metric tonnes (MT) of petrol.
The NPA, in its daily Shipping Position, said the other four ships were carrying bulk wheat, fertiliser and container.
It said 25 other ships laden with petroleum products, food items and others were expected to arrive at the Lagos Port Complex from July 13 to July 28.
NPA said the ships contained general cargo, container, bulk sugar, bulk wheat, frozen fish, bulk clinker, bulk urea, bulk gypsum, bulk steam coal, petrol and bulk fertiliser.
The organisation said 19 other ships were at the ports discharging bulk wheat, general cargo, frozen fish, soya bean, bulk sugar, container, bulk coal, butane gas and petrol.