The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Tuesday attributed the current fuel scarcity in parts of Lagos and neighbouring states to activities of security operatives at the ports.
A statement issued in Lagos by Dr. Levi Ajuonuma, NNPC Group General Manager (Public Affairs), said that security operatives detained some ships that contravened the Nigerian maritime rules.
“As you are well aware, we are still importing petroleum products, but the challenge right now is that a number of the vessels bringing products have been detained and so they could not discharge.
“But the most worrisome aspect of this development is that they are detained at the berthing point such that other vessels with petroleum products are deprived from berthing and discharging products.
“The situation has created an armada while what we have in strategic reserve is depleting,” the statement said.
The statement said that the vessels brought petroleum products into the country without temporary import permit.
It said that the corporation was not against the security operatives carrying out their duties, but “they should do so without impeding the discharge of products.
“We are not saying that they should not detain vessels that contravened our laws.
“What we are saying is that they should not arrest and detain the vessels at the berthing or discharging point so as not to block other ships from discharging, thereby cutting off supplies,” the statement said.