There is no plan to hike pump price, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) said on Tuesday.
Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr Kennie Obateru, dismissed rumours about an imminent upward review of petrol price.
He told The Nation: “NNPC has not increased its ex-depot price. I am certain that NNPC is not likely to increase its ex-depot price in February.”
According to him, NNPC has a stock of petrol that can last for over 40 days. He allayed fears about scarcity of the product.
Obateru urged the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to clamp down on the marketers hoarding petrol.
“We have sufficiency for almost 40 days. If people are hoarding or increasing their prices, it is for the DPR to look into it,” he said.
The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) urged the Federal Government to return subsidy to Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) as landing cost has soared to N180 per litre.
IPMAN’s National Vice President, Alhaji Abubakar Maiganidi, told The Nation the government should either deregulate the product fully or subsidise it.
Maigandi was reacting to the latest fuel scarcity in Lagos.
Asked whether there was an upward review of the pump price, he said: “Most of the private depots are selling petrol for between N160 and N164 per litre instead of N148 per litre.”
The Major Oil Marketers of Nigeria (MOMAN) denied that there was an increment in the pump price of petrol.
It wondered whether any fuel marketer was getting supply from any source other than the NNPC.
MOMAN Chairman, Tunji Oyebanji, said none of his members has hiked fuel price, adding that all marketers currently source products from the NNPC.
He said since the Federal Government claimed it has deregulated the downstream oil sector, marketers were at liberty to sell at any price reflecting their operational cost.
He said if the unilateral fuel price hike had come from some of his members, the government would have wielded the big stick.
Oyebanji said the Federal Government desired to deregulate the downstream oil sector, adding that if that had taken place, the price would have gone up astronomically.
He said the government was in consultation with Labour to avoid a steep rise in petroleum products prices.
Consumers resorted to panic buying of petrol products across some states, resulting in fuel queues along some routes in the Lagos metropolis.
Many fuel stations adjusted their fuel pump prices from N162.50k to N165 per litre, while others went as high as N170.00 per litre.
Some filling stations shut their outlets altogether.