From Noah Ebije, Kaduna
Plans by some oil marketers to sabotage the free flow of petrol ahead of the Christmas and new year festivities have supposedly been uncovered by the PMB Oil and Gas Progress watchdog group, which has alleged that over 90 million litres of petrol have been hoarded by some marketers.
The group, which raised the alarm in a press statement issued and signed by its National Coordinator, Mallam Sabiu Abdullahi, expressed worries over what it described as ‘the desperation’ by some saboteurs ‘to make millions by creating artificial scarcity of petroleum products in the Ember months.’
The group noted that from available information and statistics obtained from the NNPC, efforts have been made by the appropriate agency to ensure an all-round supply of petrol across the length and breadth of Nigeria and wondered why some persons would want to bring hardship upon their fellow countrymen and women by sabotaging the efforts of the NNPC and government at a critical time such as the end of the year.
The statement said: ‘Our independent investigations have confirmed that currently, Nigeria has 90million litres of petroleum that is being hoarded by marketers as a means of making easy money in the Ember months.’
The statement added that it has discovered that the new Managing Director of the PPMC, Malam Isiyaku Abdullahi, has for the past one month been placing direct telephone calls to the NNPC tanker drivers whenever they are on transit, for official feedback on the delivery of the product to the appropriate location.
Sabiu, in the statement, called on the NNPC and security agencies to swing into action by ensuring that the evil plots of the saboteurs are thwarted so that Nigerians can have an uninterrupted supply of petrol and happy holidays.
He also called on ‘patriotic Nigerians, men and women of good conscience to hold the owners of filling stations accountable and immediately inform security agents whenever they see filling station owners handing over Jerry Cans of the product to suspicious black market agents”.
The statement noted that the desperation to make money, taking advantage of the Ember months is not just an act of sabotage but ‘a deliberate, heartlessness in order to frustrate Nigerians who annually travel to their hometowns to celebrate Christmas and New Year in peace.’
The group called on the NNPC management not to be ‘lenient with any marketer found guilty of creating artificial scarcity to make brisk business while tormenting innocent Nigerians.’