The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has advised its members in Rivers State, to operate with caution with the prevailing security challenge in the country.
State IPMAN chairman, Joseph Obele, gave the advice in Port Harcourt, yesterday, following the lock down of Rivers borders with neighbouring states, announced by Governor Nyesom Wike, which took effect from 8pm yesterday (Wednesday).
Obele noted that the association has valuable assets in the country in terms of trucks, products, staff and outlets, and, therefore, members should not risk their lives travelling at night.
He noted: “The state of our nation is currently confronted with security threats and there is no state that can be described as safe zone at the moment.
“You can agree with me that we have critical assets in the nation as it concerns our trucks, products, staff and retail outlets.
“Following the border movement restrictions in and out of Rivers State as announced by the proactive state governor of Rivers State, marketers can reduce the night operation hours as our nation security situation is unpredictable. Suggestively, we can close sales on or before 8pm since vehicular traffic might likely reduce.
“Marketers should plan all personal movements within and outside the state effectively, in order not to break the border restriction order. Marketers don’t have any form of exemption at the moment”.
The IPMAN chairman further advised narketers to notify family members about their movement at any point and report any suspicious sight to the nearest police station.
Obele also told their members to operate their normal business activities with eagle eyes at the moment and avoid public gatherings at the moment.
He enjoined them to remain hopeful, as the turn around maintenance process of the Port Harcourt refinery has commenced, by steaming of the Area 5 plant (old refinery) for the purpose of flushing the tunnels, in preparation for the turn around maintenance kicking off soonest.
Obele, however, urged marketers to pray for the peace and security of the country and support Nigeria police by donating little fuel for patrol vans.
He charged IPMAN members to maintain the station selling rate of N165 to N175 per litre, because private depots still sell product to the association at N155 per litre.