The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) says the federal government has granted 66 filling stations waivers to lift and supply fuel to border communities.
Chinedu Okoronkwo, IPMAN president, told NAN on Monday that the ban was lifted after engagements between oil marketers and the Nigeria Customs Service. The government had, on November 6, 2019, directed that petroleum products should not be supplied to filling stations within 20 kilometres of the border.
Border towns had previously been identified as smuggling routes for refined petroleum products. “Our engagement with the Customs management is beginning to yield fruit. 66 filling stations have been released which is good,” he said. “The Customs have looked at the activities of these stations and it is in line with their expectations which led to the suspension of the ban.”
The IPMAN president disclosed that oil marketers were making plans to deploy modern technology in running their businesses to curb smuggling and diversion of products. On the compliance of independent marketers with the new fuel price of N125 per litre, he said market forces would force them to comply. “Some marketers bought the product at the old price and we have made our request to the government in this regard,” Okoronkwo said.
“What the government has done to reduce the fuel pump price due to the crash in crude oil prices globally is commendable and is of benefit to Nigerians.” He, however, appealed to the government to find ways to mitigate the losses recorded by marketers following the reduction of the price from N145 per litre to N125 per litre.