PPMC Depots, Fuel Prices And Syndicated Corruption
The Kafkaesque ventriloquisms that have become synonymous with the leadership in Nigeria and has further become their grandiloquent bodyguard is compounded by psychotic corruption and the malady of cluelessness, planlessness and recklessness in every strata of our government, including the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Ltd (PPMC).
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) was established by degree 33 of 1977 and the Pipelines and Products Marketing Company Ltd (PPMC) is a subsidiary of the NNPC. It is statutorily obligated to the marketing and distribution of petroleum products (PMS, HHK, AGO, DG, LPFO, HPFO etc.) in Nigeria and to Nigerians. It carries out its mandate based on an administrative organogram which networks and interfaces with marketers like the Major Marketers, Independent Marketers and Depot Marketers etc.
PPMC is the fundamental hub and fulcrum on which petroleum marketing and distribution to Nigeria and Nigerians rotates. But we need no ghost to tell us that there are endemic Petroleum outages and shortages because of the multidimensional problems of shortfall in importation, official panjandrums, sordid corruption, PHCN wahala, negligence and a culture of vulturous leadership and official recklessness at the DPR, NGC, NNPC, and PPMC levels.
However, the ppmc remains the supreme culprit in this mélange and matrix of petroleum product outage in Nigeria, because of the intensity of corruption and syndicated glamorization of graft by ppmc depot staffers, tanker drivers, loading bay officials, major marketer’s manipulations, independent marketers shenanigans, depot marketers greed, depot representatives pre-occupations and broad daylight extortion by the sib, ptf, sss and other such bodies.
The PPMC Depots are completely cocooned, befuddled and bedraggled by horrendously eerie corruption manifesting in grotesque levies and collections. We have IPMAN development levy, ipman programming committee levies etc. dpr and ppmc workers own some of the stations and so, product sharing is skewed in their favour, petroleum tanker drivers branch of nupeng hold sway over products at the ppmc depots, the SSS, SIB and R&I and DPR syndicates constitute active accomplices to these gross malfeancences that pervade the totality of PPMC depots.
The consequences are too economically dangerous to the Nigerian citizenry at large. We cannot get Petrol, Diesel, Kerosene and Cooking Gas etc for our local and industrial uses. We admonish them to curtail the level of corruption, recklessness and intimidations going on at the various PPMC depots across Nigeria to enable petroleum products get to “the common Nigerian” and at a reasonable price.
The Depot Chief’s Office and the Chairmanship of the Petroleum Tanker Drivers Union (NUPENG Branch) has become something else because of the oodles of graft money that oozes from the Depot. Hence, the do-or-die battle to become a Depot Chief or Chairman of Petroleum Tanker Drivers Union.
As a matter of hypothetical and empirical testability, a marketer invests 2.7million naira to buy a 30,000 litres tanker load of PMS, his projected profit is N280,000 but he spends N120,000 to bribe and settle these retinue of corrupt PPMC Officials and their appendages. If he pays interest on loans and overdraft and other unforeseen expenses, he runs the risk of total insolvency and compound bankruptcy. It is time to put an end to the harrowing experiences of fuel shortages and scarcity by adequately empowering marketers, fighting and sounding the death-knell of corruption at all PPMC Depots.
All these human bottlenecks notwithstanding, the former Minister of Petroleum Resources and OPEC Secretary – General, Rilwanu Lukman observed in the book “NIGERIAN PETROLEUM BUSINESS” – A Handbook edited by Dr. Victor Eromosele, on Pg 29 that “Nevertheless, the Petroleum Marketing Sector is still recording relative success and shattering security price records in the Nigerian stock exchange. It does appear that petroleum marketing is destined to continue to attract new entrants. But the new must learn the art of business ball-juggling from old players – The Majors – if they hope to achieve a measure of success themselves.”
Finally, these observations must be investigated to enable government check the excesses of these people. The English playwright, William Shakespeare observed that, “the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in us that we are underlyings” and Alexander Pope posits that, “let the ends of things disjoin, it is the whole world that suffers.” We must stop the rascality and reckless brigandage at all PPMC Depots. Over to the Minister of Petroleum Resources.
Chief Bobson Gbinije
Mandate Against Poverty (Map)
Warri, Delta State, Nigeria.