NNPC GMD, Baru
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has disclosed the importation of 9.8 million metric tons of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as fuel worth $5.8 billion to combat the nation’s protracted fuel crisis since last year.
Even at that, the fuel crisis has remained unabated till date as citizens and residents in Nigeria battle to source fuel at various high prices per litre from the black market in order to move on in their vehicles as well as power their private power generation sets.
The Group Managing Director of the corporation, Dr. Maikanti Baru, made the disclosure of the importation during a public hearing by the Senate Committee on Public Accounts at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja.
In a presentation by Baru who was represented by the Chief Operating Officer, Finance and Accounts, Mr. Abdulrazaq Isiaka, NNPC stated that it carried out the massive importation in fulfilment of its statutory role of supplier of last resort to ensure that Nigerians do not suffer as a result of product unavailability.
According to Baru, the corporation’s provision of 9.8 million metric tons of petrol so far has helped a great deal in ameliorating the suffering of Nigerians.
In a statement by the Corporation’s Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Ndu Ughamadu, Baru said the corporation’s intervention became necessary following the inability of the major and independent marketers to import the product because of the high landing cost which made cost recovery and profitability difficult owing to the regulated price regime.
While assuring the public of adequate product supply, he however, pointed out that cross-border smuggling due to price disparity between Nigeria and neighbouring countries where a litre of petrol sells above N350 per litre as well as logistic issues in trucking products to different locations across the country remained serious challenges in the quest for fuel queue-free situation in the country.
The Chairman Senate Committee on Public Accounts, Sen. Matthew Uroghide, noted that the public hearing was a part of the Committee’s duty to find lasting solutions to the problem of fuel scarcity in order to make life easy for all Nigerians.