PETROL scarcity and long queues at filling stations returned to the streets of Abuja, the Federal Capital City (FCT) yesterday.
The alleged indebtedness of the Federal Government has crippled the marketers’ effective procurement and distribution capacity, it was learnt last night.
According to the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), the government was owing more than N100 billion in overdue bridging payments.
They alleged that the N100 billion debt due on procured petrol by the defunct Petroleum Equalisation Fund (PEF), now Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), have not been paid despite persistent demand.
IPMAN’s National Vice President Alhaji Abubakar Maigandi, said the unpaid debts have resulted in cash constraint, which he said was hampering members capacity to procure more product.
According to him, the re-emerging petrol scarcity “has just started and it will continue”.
He lamented that for over 12 months, PEF (now NMDPRA) has not paid any money to the marketers.
The marketers, he noted, are in a dilemma as they cannot procure any product since their fund is held down in NMDPRA.
He said: “It means the scarcity has started because the PEF is not paying. For 12 months there has been no payment.
“Marketers cannot lift the product because there is no money. The PEF is owing over N100 billion, that is the outstanding.