Fuel Scarcity Looms in North as IPMAN Commences Strike

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The Suleja Depot Branch of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has commenced a three-day warning strike on Monday in protest against the continued indebtedness of the Federal Government to oil marketers with respect to the payment of fuel transportation costs, otherwise called bridging claims.

The strike might be lead to the scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol in Abuja, Kaduna, Nasarawa, Kogi, Niger and neighbouring states.

The IPMAN Suleja Depot Branch Chairman, Yahaya Alhassan, said marketers had stopped the supply of products from the depot, as the union had prevented trucks from moving PMS to the northern states.

He said marketers were withdrawing their services until the Federal Government settled their outstanding bridging claims of N50.5bn.

He said, “The Petroleum Equalisation Fund has not paid our money. We have N50.5bn (to be paid by PEF) and because of that we are withdrawing our services.”

He said the three-day warning strike would go on if the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority fails to remit the money.

“At the expiration of the warning strike on Wednesday, if they (NMDPRA) fail to pay us, the stoppage of supply would continue indefinitely,” Alhassan stated.
He said all the appeals which the association made to the authority to pay the debt had been ignored.
Meanwhile, the marketers have shut the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited depot in Kano State.

The IPPMAN Forum Chairman in Kano State, Alhaji Musa Yahaya Maikifi, disclosed this while addressing journalists in Kano on Monday.

He said the Forum found it necessary to shut the entire nine NNPC depots across the 19 northern states following the failure of the Federal Government to pay the outstanding bridging claims.

He said the union would ensure that no truck moved out of the depots for the period of three days

Maikifi said, “As I am speaking to you now all the nine depots have been shut as part of the strike embarked upon by the forum members,”

He further noted that the forum had held several meetings with the relevant government officials with a view to ensuring that the bridging claims were paid to the marketers but to no avail.

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