The Department of State Services (DSS) has given the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited and oil marketers a 48-hour ultimatum to make Premium Motor Spirit known as petrol available for Nigerians
DSS Spokesman, Peter Afunanya announced the directive while briefing journalists at the headquarters of the secret police in Abuja after over three hours of closed-door meeting with stakeholders in the petroleum sector, on Thursday, December 8, 2022.
He said failure to comply, the DSS will activate its operations across the country.
According to Afunanya, the challenge of fuel scarcity has assumed a dimension that is detrimental to the security of the country.
He said during the meeting, the NNPC agreed that there is enough product that will serve Nigerians during and after the Yuletide season.
He said; “MOMAN and NNPCL from time to time will review the distribution chain to ensure that all bottlenecks concerning distribution are permanently resolved.
“There is an agreement that marketers will be operating for 24hrs on daily basis. The tankers also agreed that from now on all hands will be on deck to ensure lifting of the products.
IPMAN, Afunanya observed has also committed itself to ensure that the product is available for 24hrs daily.
“For us at the DSS, we agreed to provide adequate security for fuel distribution.
“Therefore, we insisted that the fuel distribution must improve and all challenges eliminated in 48hrs, and after 48hrs, we will as a matter of urgency carryout operations across the country. And in doing this, we won’t mind whose oars is gored”, he stated.
Noting that it won’t be business as usual, Afunanya said DSS commands and platform nationwide had been put on high alert, adding that “they are to get information on any element who want to obstruct these efforts.”
He advised Nigerians not to take laws into their hands, noting that the DSS had extracted commitment from the stakeholders that all issues will be resolved within the next 48hrs.
“The well-being of Nigeria is our interest. We have to prevent crimes. People should capitalise on this to cause trouble. Therefore we will not allow anyone to use this opportunity to cause mayhem”, he added.
For weeks, vehicle owners especially in Lagos and Abuja have had a tough time getting petrol from filling stations. Whilst many outlets are closed, the few ones that are open sell the indispensable commodity for as high as N250 per litre from the uniform price of N169/litre.
The shortage of supply has led to long, grueling snake-like queues at the few open filling stations as motorists and business owners jostle to buy fuel while others resort to the black market. The situation has also worsened traffic on major roads as vehicle owners block at least one lane to join queues to filling stations.