IPMAN suspends planned strike action 

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Reprieve seems to be in the horizon as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Lagos State Chapter, opts to enter into dialogue with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC to resolve issues around petroleum procurement at depots which they claim depot operators sell above government approved prices.

The Association therefore said in the meantime it has suspended its plan to withdraw services and shutdown members over 900 fuel stations in Lagos State and parts of Ogun State.

The chairman of IPMAN, AlhajiAlanamuBalogun, supported by executive members, announced the suspension, at the end of a meeting of oil marketers held at Ejigbo secretariat today.

Balogun said the suspension followed a strong appeal by the NNPC who had arranged a meeting with the IPMAN officials for December 14 at Abuja NNPC headquarters.

He said IPMAN yielded to NNPC’s appeal because of members of the public who engaged in panic buying of petroleum products since the IPMAN’s announcement to downtools.

Balogun told newsmen that the meeting with NNPC officials would determine whether or not the withdrawal of service would still hold, pointing that all the structures have been set in motion while all the stakeholders have been mobilized for the action. “But we don’t want to be seen by the government and the public as economic saboteurs because we have a stake in the economic stability of this great country; he stressed.

The IPMAN debunked the NNPC group General manager public Affairs Division, Mr. NduUghamadu’s statement that there was enough fuel storage at Ejigbo NNPC Satellite Depot, and that the price of fuel remained N133.38k, which Balogun said was far from the truth.

He said Ughamadu should rather come to Ejigbo and find out the true position of things instead of staying in Abuja and saying what is not correct.

IPMAN, Lagos State chapter had few days ago threatened to withdraw its services across Lagos State and part of Ogun State as from December 11. Atleast, over 900 filling stations were to be shut down, which might lead to fuel crisis during the yuletide festivities.

The IPMAN said it took the painful decision because its members had been running their fuel stations at a loss since the past eight months due to NNPC default in the bulk purchase agreement it signed with IPMAN to sell fuel to its members at a cost of N133.28k per litre.

Presently, said IPMAN, a litre of fuel (PMS) is being sold to its members by DAPMAN at N141, apart from running costs, bank charges and other expenses which made it impossible for its members to sell a litre of fuel at controlled price of N145, but N146 per litre.

The IPMAN explained that while the NNPC had refused to sell fuel to its members regularly, it (NNPC) is diverting the supplies to DAPMAN at a price of N117 per litre and DAPMAN in turn, selling to IPMAN members at N141 per litre.

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