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“Unscrupulous Marketers Are Behind Kerosene Scarcity”-Minister


Nigeria’s Petroleum Minister, Diezani Allison-Maduekwe made another attempt at explaining the reason behind the scarcity of cooking kerosene in the country.
Speaking on the floor of the House of Representatives recently, the Minister spoke about the existence of a cartel that diverts the product. According to her, the daily kerosene need of Nigerians is estimated at eight million litres while about 11 million litres is provided to the market. She however disclosed that a large percentage of that are “hoarded, diverted and illegally moved.” The Minister also claimed that much of Nigeria’s kerosene end up being sold illegally into neighbouring countries.
The Minister also made a startling revelation that Nigerian airlines now fly on Kerosene meant for cooking. The minister blamed this on unscrupulous marketers who purchase much of the kerosene meant for cooking to sell them to airlines at a higher price.
Findings have shown that worldwide, Dual Purpose Kerosene is what Airlines worldwide use as aviation fuel. Meanwhile, Nigeria is one of the very few countries that use it for cooking.
Street Journal’s investigation revealed that NNPC sells millions of litres of kerosene subsidized for domestic use at N45 per litre to independent marketers. The marketers and their cronies on the other hand turn around and sell the product to airlines at over N120 per liter, thereby making billions of Naira in single transactions.
This round tripping has caused the average Nigerian who cooks with kerosene untold hardship as they are made to pay as much as N 210 to buy a liter of kerosene, where it is available.
Meanwhile, the Minister has promised to name the unscrupulous marketers very soon and decisive action might be taken against them.
While many believe that the Petroleum Minister does not seem to have a clue of what is causing the scarcity of kerosene in the country, it is being peddled in some quarters that some marketers are indeed guilty as charged.
Street Journal has also found out that if care is not taken, the use of cooking kerosene as aviation fuel might soon make flying in Nigeria a dangerous venture. This is because the cooking kerosene used in Nigeria is a thicker version which can endanger aircraft engines if used over long periods.
The Minister has again promised that in the next three weeks, the market will be flooded with kerosene to alleviate the suffering of the masses. It will however be recalled that a similar promise was made in June when Nigerians were assured that the problem would be over in ten days, since then however, the situation has not improved.

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