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Wednesday, 30 March 2016

REVEALED! MINISTER FOR PETROLEUM ' RESOURCES 'KACHIKWU' VOICES OUT ON THE CAUSES OF FUEL SCARCITY, GIVES A DATE TO END THE SCARCITY

REVEALED! MINISTER FOR PETROLEUM ' RESOURCES 'KACHIKWU' VOICES OUT ON THE CAUSES OF FUEL SCARCITY, GIVES A DATE TO END THE SCARCITY

The Federal Republic of Nigeria's Minister for Petroleum resources in person of Dr. Ibe Kachikwu has explained the reasons behind the unfortunate fuel scarcity across the nation, assuring Nigerians that the issue would be resolved on or before the 7th of April 2016 adding that he will surely give his best to serve his country rather than resigning as many are clamoring  for.


Kachikwu spoke extensively with newsmen saying  “I will not resign. I am here to do my job. Those who are planning to stage a protest against me in Abuja should save their fuel money because I have a job to do, and I am committed to doing it well.
“I share the pains of Nigerians. I feel that pain every day. I walk the streets and those who are following my trajectories since I resumed office would see that even on Christmas day, I was at the refineries. On Easter Day, I was in Lagos monitoring fuel distribution at the depots.
He continued, “I have given 24/7 attention to the problems in this industry, which are unbelievable. I have continued to work with one sole purpose in mind, which is that every problem will have a solution.” adding that  “I do apologise if a comment I make jocularly with my friends in the press about not being a magician offends some Nigerians; it wasn’t meant to be. It is a side jocular issue and I did go ahead to explain what needed to be done. I didn’t intend to create this kind of hyperbole that it did.
“Let me admit that I am not a typically experienced politician. I am a technocrat. Some of the phraseologies that I may use, while being acceptable in the arena in which I play, obviously will not be acceptable in the public political arena. If anybody’s sensitivities were offended by that, I totally apologise.”
However, Dr. Kachikwu gave the reasons behind the scarcity saying  “Let me put the reasons for the scarcity in three categories. First, when we came in August, this country had arrears of unpaid subsidy claims that were in excess of N600bn, which were not paid for over a year. “Progressively, over a period of eight months, prior to my coming on board, people had been staying away from importation not at a heavy level, but by about 10 to 15 per cent of allocations were not being met.
Additionally, “There was hope that ultimately, if the subsidy regime continued, they would get paid; so, some people continued to import, but by the time we came in, people had reached a breaking point and most of the companies didn’t have the liquidity even to go to the banks and open letters of credit, and that became a major issue.”
Secondly, he said “The second major issue was that once the N600bn subsidy money was paid, the ability of the marketers to import the product became a challenge, because they could not raise letters of credit, and up to this point, that still remains a major issue. Adding that “So, even if they wanted to import, they needed letters of credit and adequate foreign exchange cover. Some of them were owing arrears of liabilities as a result of the commitment I had made on petroleum importation.” and that  “Once we do that, we should be away from the incessant fuel crisis that we have.
Punch gathered that Kachikwu concluded saying “The refineries will be working and the volumes they will be producing will be sent to the strategic reserves to address difficult times. In April, we are expected to get 150 per cent of the volumes that will be needed. A lot of that will go to storage tanks. Hopefully, that should sort out the problem.”

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