Nigerian Petroleum Minister Pledges Intervention on Outstanding Payments to Oil Marketers
Keen on ensuring a hitch-free supply and distribution of petroleum products across the country, especially during the end of year festivities, the Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Alison-Madueke, has pledged to intervene and ensure that outstanding arrears of fuel subvention owed to petroleum marketers are paid by the end of November.
The Minister who gave this assurance at a meeting with members of the Depot Owners and Petroleum Products Marketers Association (DAPPMA) and Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) in Abuja yesterday said she was already in consultation with the Minister of Finance on the issue.
Mrs. Alison-Madueke disclosed that she has already briefed President Goodluck Jonathan on the implications of the continued delay in the payment of subsidy to the marketers, adding that she has also scheduled a meeting with the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emiefele, to work out ways of keeping the banks from making good their threats to withdraw facility lines from the marketers on account of the debts arising from the delay in settling petroleum subsidy arrears.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of DAPPMA, Mr. Dapo Abiodun, urged the Minister to intervene to sort out the issue before it degenerates into another bout of fuel scarcity in the country.
The Executive Secretary of MOMAN, Obafemi Olawore, on his part stated that already stocks of petrol in the various depots in Apapa, Lagos, are fast getting depleted, urging the Minister not to allow the nation get to the point where products dry up from the depots first before intervening as such a situation will not augur well for the country, especially at this time of approaching end of year festivities.
The petroleum products marketers expressed their gratitude to the Minister, adding that they felt reassured by her promise to ensure that the subsidy arears are settled by the end of the month.