PENGASSAN With Lasting Solution Over Fuel
Scarcity In Nigeria
THE Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has called for the rehabilitation of the refineries, depots and other oil and gas facilities as the solutions to end the current rounds of fuel scarcity in the country. Tribune News
The association expressed concern over the current fuel scarcity and attendant man-hours and energy Nigerians lost to queue at fuel stations and considered this embarrassing to a nation.
PENGASSAN made the observation when its leadership paid courtesy visits to the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF), the Petroleum Training Development Funds (PTDF), Petroleum and Pipelines marketing Company (PPMC), and the House of Representatives.
In a bid to proffer solutions to the lingering fuel scarcity in the country and attendant man-hours lost at fuel stations, the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (PENGASSAN) has advised the Federal Government to overhaul all pipeline networks, rehabilitate the nation’s refineries as well as upgrade depots and the oil and gas infrastructural facilities.
It said all stakeholders in the industry must proffer enduring and sustainable ways to end the persistent fuel crisis and prevent such from rearing its ugly head again.
While addressing the managements of the agencies and the legislators during the visits, PENGASSAN President, Comrade Francis Olabode Johnson, lauded them for their various roles in ensuring that Nigerians are protected from feeling the pangs of the vagaries of global price regime of petroleum products, and prevented collusion and restrictive trade practices harmful in the sector.
At the PPPRA, Comrade Johnson said: “We want sustainable steps to be taken to end the persistent fuel crisis that has inflicted undue hardship on Nigerians. Let me reinstate our call for increase local refining by ensuring that the nation’s refineries work at maximum capacity.
Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Yakubu Dogara, on Tuesday emphasised that only the local refining of crude oil could guarantee permanent solution to the perennial and embarrassing fuel scarcity in the country.
Government should involve the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) in rehabilitation and repair of the refineries; our refineries are due for a major expansion and ‘debottlenecking’, development of new strategies in ensuring adequate and sustainable crude supply to the refineries. Government should also fast track processes that will encourage private sector involvement in local refining.
We are equally calling on the Federal Government to rehabilitate and upgrade all depots in the country, while there is need to carry out an overhaul of all pipeline networks to ease distribution and supply of petroleum products.”
At the headquarters of the Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF), the leadership of PENGASSAN led by Comrade Johnson, called on the agency to continuously engender policies that will enhance the Agency’s responsibilities in the value chain to ease petroleum products transportation.
The PENGASSAN also advised the government to address the issue of surrounding the integrity of pipelines by repairing and replacing damaged pipelines to enhance supply of crudes to refineries and export terminals as well as distribution of refined products to all the depots.
We have to reinstate that unless there is increase in the Government’s commitment not only to maintain but also to rehabilitate and repair as well as replace ageing and ruptured pipelines, there will continue to be challenges with the distribution and supply of petroleum products to all parts of the country.
This will also negatively impact on local refining due to inadequate supply of crude through the pipelines to the refineries. The dream of gas to power, and domestic and industrial gas development policies of the Government will be unrealised.
The NNPC and security agencies should ensure security of lives of staff of PPMC/NPSC/SML in oil and gas installations, as they are always at the frontline of repairing damaged pipelines and protect pipelines from being vandalised.
There should be improved surveillance with the use of modern technology, adequate implementation of pipeline right of ways and location of security agencies’ offices in “black spots” along pipelines.
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