Petroleum Resources Minister of State Timipre Sylva.
Warning of dire consequences for any individual or groups seeking to exploit or further cause untold hardship to ordinary Nigerians by disrupting fuel supply and distribution chain, the Federal Government in the same breath is rendering assurances of government’s determination at ending the debacle permanently.
Issuing the warning on Tuesday via a statement by his Senior Adviser, Media and Communications, Mr. Horatius Egua, the Minister of State Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, urged security agencies to be on high alert in preventing attempts by subversive elements to cause any disruption during the period of Nigeria’s forthcoming General Elections.
Appealing to Nigerians for understanding, Sylva noted that the President Muhammadu Buhari‘s administration was sincere with finding permanent solutions to the fuel problems in the country.
He explained that the government was exploring all options in seeking an end to the fuel problem in the country.
He urged stakeholders in the oil and gas sector to join hands with government in ending the problem.
On a tour of selected petrol stations in Abuja, Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory (FCT), penultimate Friday, Sylva had expressed government’s satisfaction at the efforts of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) in ensuring fuel availability to the average Nigerian
The Minister had urged the company to keep up the tempo.
The NNPCL has in the last one month reportedly maintained a total weekly evacuation of 450.92 million litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly called petrol.
That total weekly evacuation of PMS translates to of a daily average of 64.42 million litres.
Calling for a collective support in dealing with the fuel issue, Sylva said that the government felt the pains of the ordinary Nigerian due to the lingering fuel queues.
He said that the relevant government agencies were working round-the-clock to ensure fuel availability at fuel stations across the country.
“The problems associated with fuel queues in the country is not a problem that came with Buhari’s government but a fallout of long years of rot and decadence in products supply and distribution chain by successive governments.
“Buhari’s administration is addressing the problem holistically, this is the first time in so many years that a government is addressing the problems associated with fuel supply and distribution collectively,’’ Sylva said.
As part of the moves to find lasting solutions to the problem, according to the Minister, the Federal Government recently set up a 14-member committee to get to the bottom of the problem, with a view to avoiding future occurrences.
He said that the Federal Government had also embarked on refineries rehabilitations neglected over the years, with the Port Harcourt Refinery at about 65 per cent completion, Kaduna just awarded to Daewo of South Korea and Warri expected to follow soon.
Sylva said that the government, through the NNPCL, acquired a 20 per cent equity stake in the Dangote Refinery.
He explained that the government had also embarked on the licensing of modular refineries.
He noted that the government had concluded the marginal fields bid and the improvement of security along crude pipelines in the Niger Delta region in the last few months; actions all geared towards increasing crude oil production to meet domestic consumption and checking scarcity.
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