The low supply of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, being experienced in parts of Lagos and South-Western states may drag till the end of September, and might spread to other locations if not addressed in earnest.
It was gathered on Thursday that the situation may linger till month end because the System 2B pipeline in front of Good Luck Estate at Idimu, Alimosho Local Council Development Area of Lagos, is going to be ready for use by September ending.
Oil marketers had attributed the cause of the recent fuel queues experienced in many parts of Lagos and some states in the South-West to the disruptive activities of vandals.
They explained that the shutdown of the System 2B pipeline, which supplies large volumes of products to the region, had impacted negatively in the flow of PMS in Lagos and neighbouring states
“From our end, the issue has been with the pipeline vandalism which we raised an alarm over since July. Satellite depot has not loaded any product in the last three weeks, and whenever there is a problem here, it is going to affect Lagos and the whole of South-West,” the Chairman, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Satellite Depot, Akin Akinrinade, had told The PUNCH on Tuesday.
Akinrinade had further explained, “Although I don’t know what has been happening in other depots, from what we gathered yesterday, even NNPC Retail has been operating skeletal product dispatching. The NNPC Retail loaded just three to four trucks to Ikoyi on Monday. No product was dispatched to other places. I don’t know about other depots.”
But on Thursday, the Chief Corporate Communications Officer, Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Garba-Deen Muhammad, said the vandalised pipeline was being worked on by the NNPCL.
He told our correspondent that the facility would be ready towards the end of September, which implies that the supply hiccups associated with the shutdown of the pipeline could linger till month end.
The NNPCL official admitted that there were issues with the pipeline but stated that “the company is in the process of restoring it and we are hoping that it should be okay by the end of September.
“Right now its being worked on and hopefully it should be back and restored for proper use by the end of September. So that is the position right now, by the end of September the pipeline should be back on stream.”
Commenting on the development the President, Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria, Billy Gillis-Harry, said there was already a drop in the supply of petrol nationwide.
He also stated that the foreign exchange crisis in Nigeria had discouraged more marketers from implementing their PMS importation plans.
“There’s already short supply of products and the reasons are not far-fetched. In the beginning of the subsidy regime most of our marketers decided to pull resources and import.