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Fuel scarcity: 9,000 marketers to lose their licences

Over 9,000 oil marketers could their operating licences, as Nigerians continue to grapple with fuel scarcity.

The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has now urged the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), to extend its final deadline for licensing renewal to July.

IPMAN also appealed to the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Regulatory Authority to release 9,000 already processed licences to its members.

The association made the request known in a release signed by the National Public Relations Officer, Chief Chinedu Ukadike, on Thursday in Abuja.

Recall that IPMAN in a statement on Sunday lamented the slow pace of marketers’ licence renewal by the NMDPRA.

The NNPCL had placed a deadline of April 15, 2024, for marketers to renew their licences or risk closure to access their customer express portals for the purchase of petroleum products from NNPC Retail Limited.

But IPMAN requested an extension, saying the extension would enable marketers to reconcile their licenses and reduce panic buying by members of the public aggravating the present scarcity of petroleum products.

The statement read, “The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria are abreast with current developments in the downstream sector of our petroleum industry and wish to state that the latest information reaching us from the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority states that they have already processed more than 9,000 out of the 15,000 licenses they are expected to process for our members within this period.

“Marketers are fast-tracking the processing of their licenses to avoid the impending closure of their customer express portals for purchase of petroleum products from NNPC Retail Limited.

“We, therefore, use this opportunity to appeal to the management of the NMDPRA and NNPC Retail Limited to respectively release the processed licenses and extend the deadline for delisting of marketers from their express portals. If our request is granted, it will ease the tension of panic buying by members of the public in order not to aggravate the present scarcity of petroleum products.”

Giving further clarity in a telephone interview, Ukadike said, “The release is to appeal to the NNPCL and NMPDRA to please extend the final deadline to July so that it would enable them to reconcile the licences so that they will not be unduly shut out off the portal and that is IPMAN appeal.”

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