There are fears of a fresh fuel scarcity hitting the country as members of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) in nine Northern states have embarked on a three-day withdrawal of services at depots as warning strike over non-payment of their bridging claims amounting to N70 billion.
Spokesman for IPMAN in Borno State, Abdulkadir Mustapha made the announcement on Monday September 5.
He said non-payment of their claims is inflicting untold hardship to their teaming members, and failure to pay the money would result in indefinite strike, shutting down of all filling stations.
Daily Trust reported that Mustapha who called on the Federal Government to intervene by prevailing on NMDPRA to pay all understanding claims to avert indefinite strike which may affect fuel distribution across the northern region, added that members of the group would embark on the strike in Borno, Adamawa, Kano, Kaduna, Benue, Plateau, Gombe, Niger and Sokoto.
“Hence we have resolved at our meeting held in Kano state to withdraw our services at the depots for three days.
“Henceforth all products lifted must be settled or paid for within the stipulated period of 30 days as earlier agreed. Failure to do so will lead to indefinite suspension of our services in all depots and filling stations across the northern region.
“Though, some few payment had been made which is less than five per cent of our claims but greater part of the claims had not been settled. More so, no payment had been made with with regard to this year claims, and a lot of the year 2019/2021 still remain unpaid.
“For years, we have been following and lobbying the management of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) regarding our unsettled bridging claims amounting to N70 billion to no avail.
“As peace loving association, we urge the authorities to settle or pay all the unsettled claims. We cannot be lifting fuel from far South to the North without being paid. Our decision to go for the warning strike is to draw the attention of authorities to take action that why we didn’t shut down our outlets not to cause unnecessary hardship to the citizenry.”