Mr Victor Etefia, a petroleum products marketer, has urged the Federal Government to designate some private depots in Akwa Ibom for the distribution of petroleum products. Etefia, a former chairman, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Akwa Ibom branch, made the appeal in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Eket on Sunday.
Etefia said that the measure would complement the services rendered by the five NNPC depots in the state. “The Federal Government should designate some private depots to augment the services rendered by the NNPC depots. Government depots alone cannot cope with the business. “The consumption rate of petroleum products in Nigerians is very high. The NNPC depot in Calabar is very small and cannot satisfy the demand in the South-South, let alone other areas.’’
Etefia said that the depots in Cross River, including 15 private ones were inadequate to service Akwa Ibom and other states in the South-South geo-political zone. He called on the Federal Government to make the products available to the marketers, saying that was the only way to ensure total compliance with the official pump price.
“Government should also put other measures in place to ensure that the designated depots comply with the regulated price regime. “Products that are sourced from the secondary markets are not what you can sell at the government-approved price.
“A situation where marketers stay for two to three months before getting supply cannot guarantee availability, no matter the pressure government mounts on them. According to him, government should be proactive in addressing the challenges in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry.