The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has said that it has taken measures to end the current fuel scarcity being witnessed in Lagos and some parts of the country.
Acting Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the Corporation, Mr. Fidel Pepple, said in a statement yesterday that the fuel shortage was caused by the shutdown of system 2b, a major pipeline that evacuates between nine to 11 million litres of fuel from Lagos to Ibadan, Ilorin and the North, as a result of the pipeline vandalism by oil thieves a couple of weeks ago.
Pepple said to alleviate the problems resulting from the shutdown of the pipeline, the NNPC has stepped up distribution through fuel tankers.
"I want to assure Nigerians that NNPC has stepped up fuel supply to marketers and distributors for effective and efficient supply of fuel to Nigerians.
"As I speak, we have raised the daily supply of fuel from the Folawiyo tank farm from 150 tankers to 250 tankers, MRS from 100 to 200 tankers, Capital Oil to 300 tankers, NIPCO to 70 tankers, and AITEO to 100 tankers," Pepple said.
He further revealed that fuel delivery and supply to Port Harcourt, Aba and Calabar has also been augmented, adding that bridging to the North has equally enjoyed robust supply.
He explained that as at Thursday last week, NNPC had 32 days sufficiency of petroleum products, even as he assured Nigerians that the NNPC was collaborating with the security agencies to fix the pipeline in order to restore normal fuel supply to the affected areas.
He reiterated the corporation's position that the safety and security of oil pipelines are the collective responsibility of each and every citizen and appealed to all and sundry to be vigilant and contribute to making oil installations safe and secure.
Also, as part of the efforts to boost fuel supply to the country, three cargoes of petrol arrived Apapa Jetty Monday to discharge products to marketers, THISDAY has learnt.
Investigations revealed that one of the vessels, MT DELPHINA, which was imported by NNPC, had already started discharging petrol at the Petroleum Wharf (PWA) Jetty in Apapa.
The Apapa Jetty comprises Bulk Oil Jetty, North Oil Jetty (NOJ) and Petroleum Wharf (PWA), used mainly by the NNPC.
It was learnt that the second cargo, MT CRETE, which was imported by NIPCO Plc and a third cargo brought in by the NNPC yesterday evening were still undergoing documentation as at press time.
THISDAY gathered that after the documentation of the vessels, NIPCO will discharge at the Bulk Oil Jetty, while NNPC will discharge its second vessel at PWA.
Long queues of vehicles resurfaced at filling stations in Lagos State at the weekend, following fuel supply disruptions experienced by NNPC and a few private marketers.
The situation led to an increase in the ex-depot price of petrol from the N87.66 officially recommended by the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) to between N92.50 and N94.50.
In the meantime, the Group Managing Director (GMD) of the NNPC, Mr. Andrew Yakubu, has reiterated his commitment to developing the nation's gas resources as a tool for economic transformation.
The GMD, who gave the assurance at the weekend during a reception held for him by the monarch and people of Zangon Kataf at the Agwatyap's Palace, Atak-Njei, in Zagon Kataf Local Government Area, Kaduna State, pledged to work harder towards achieving greater domestic supply of gas to power plants for increased power generation.
He promised to champion the building and revival of critical infrastructure for gas delivery in keeping with President Goodluck Jonathan's transformation agenda.
The GMD, who said he was humbled by the love showered on him by his people, noted that there was a dearth of entrepreneurial skills among his people and announced the establishment of a foundation as his own way of giving back to his community.
He said the modality and administrative structure of the foundation would soon be spelt out with a view to ensuring that every gifted child in the community is given an opportunity to acquire education while deserving women and youths would be given the opportunity to acquire skills.
The event hosted by the Agwatyap of Zango Kataf, His Highness Dr. Harrison Y. Bungon, was attended by a host of traditional rulers from the state and many prominent citizens from across the country, including the Group Executive Director, Corporate Services of the NNPC, Dr. Peter Nmadu; Chief Executive Officer of Capital Oil and Gas Industries Ltd, Mr. Ifeanyi Uba; Chairperson and Chief Executive Officer of Brittania-U Nigeria Ltd, Mrs. Uju Ifejika; and former military administrator of Kano State, Air Vice Marshal Ishaya Shekeri (rtd).