The increase in pump price of kerosene has generated some controversies among bodies. The controversy was inferred as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) denied knowledge of any increase in pump price of Dual Purpose Kerosene (DPK) known as kerosene that was disclosed by Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG).
IPMAN president, Chinedu Okoronkwo in a telephone interview said as at Friday, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was selling the product at N135 per litre which NUPENG told News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) was increased to N150 by the corporation.
Okoronkwo, while filling questions explained that “what we may be experiencing now is inadequate supply, prompted by low capacity utilisation of local refineries and importation challenges. But I can tell you that it is a matter of time to stabilise supply because the Central Bank of Nigeria has offered marketers a new window of opportunity to access foreign exchange at a flexible rate to enable us import kerosene and we are making frantic efforts to take advantage of the opportunity”.
He argued that at N135 per litre from NNPC, a profit margin of N10 by marketers should not push the price to N200 per litre as it is in the market now.
The IPMAN president blamed the situation on activities of middlemen and some people who have infiltrated the sector to rip end users of their hard earned money.
Okoronkwo said the NNPC has not informed the marketers about any decision to put price tag on the product.
He however advised marketers to also take advantage of the intervention of the Bank of Industry which has offered to give funds to marketers to promote the use of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG).
“We have entered into partnership with the BoI and the bank has offered to support us with loan facility at 8 percent interest rate over a period of 5 years to install LPG facilities across our network.
“We are now embarking on sensitisation campaign because we know the importance of LPG as alternative to kerosene. It is not only affordable but environmentally friendly. We will go for that option but in the short term, government should make kerosene available to reduce the suffering of the masses as well as save our forest as people may now opt for firewood as alternative cooking fuel,” Okoronkwo noted.
The Southwest chairman of NUPENG, Tokunbo Korodo, while responding to questions from NAN in Lagos on Saturday when he announced the increment said the price will encourage more importation of the product by the marketers.
He further explained that most of the filling stations selling kerosene between N200 and N220 as the pump price was as a result of additional money on transportation of the product and some other levies paid by marketers.
The chairman said that at present, NNPC was the only importer of kerosene and was using private depots to sell the product.
The NNPC has fixed N150 per litre as the new depot price of kerosene and has directed all its depots and private depot to comply with the directive.