The Federal government of Nigeria has declared a state of emergency because of the fuel scarcity which has gone on for months now. Everybody seems to be desperate over the frustrating saga. But who will save Nigerians from this fuel scarcity?
In an official statement, the Dangote Group, assures Nigerians that as soon as the Dangote refineries become operational, there will be less or no cause to queue up endlessly for fuel (PMS) and kerosene (DPK). Fuel scarcity will hopefully be history when the refinery steps in to augment the already existing domestic productions.
With the current fuel scarcity in the oil producing nation, Nigerians eagerly await the refinery. The refinery is anticipated to be the future world’s largest single refinery with a capacity of about 500,000 – 650,000 barrels per day (BPD). It is hopefully scheduled to be operational from 2018.
The Executive Director, Stakeholder Management and Corporate Communications, Mansur Ahmed, says that in order to serve the people better, there is a need that the oil market be deregulated for all, so that there will be uniformity of price in both local and international markets.
“The refining industry is a global industry, if you use those international benchmarks, you shouldn’t really worry about price. It is time Nigeria completely deregulated the downstream industry…”
Having refineries that will increase petroleum supplies within the country will save Nigeria a whole lot of national embarrassment. It will save the nation huge amounts of money too. More so, Nigeria will once again become a bonafide exporter of fuel like it used to be in the 70’s. The best of it is that in unison with the already existing refineries, there will be a more effective distribution of fuel in the country.
As Nigeria anticipates the Dangote refinery, something still has to be done about the current fuel scarcity in the country. How does Nigeria intend to check pipeline vandalism? A recurring evil that is caused by the shortage of fuel supplies to effectively meet demands. How about corruption and irregularities in the oil sector?
As a desperate measure, the Federal government has reduced NNPC’s import allocation with the result that private operators will independently supply about 60% petroleum products. As it is there are cargoes soon to be off loaded in the country .Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, Minister of State for Petroleum has said:
“We have confirmations for cargoes lined up to be received in-country. Petroleum cargoes are to be treated as essential commodities, with all the regulatory agencies – DPR, PPRA, put on the alert.”
Fuel scarcity has become a usual anomaly in Nigeria. However, Kachikwu says that steps are being taken to tackle the challenge. He suggested their would be changes in both downstream and midstream sectors. He also says that there are plans to re-address the distribution of fuel in the nation.
According to Lai Mohammed, the government has increased fuel supply to the 5 major cities- Port Harcourt, Lagos, Kano, Abuja and Kaduna. He says NNPC will supervise and sanction petrol stations that indulge in hoarding and hiking the official price of the product. Such sanctions will include “sealing of filling station, revocation of licence and selling petrol free of charge. “
The Buhari administration is reported to be currently working in partnership “with technically and financially capable investors” to help manage the storage and logistics challenges.