July 13, 2024

IPMAN threatens to drag NMDPRA to court over bridging claims

Suleiman Aidris

The controversy between the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and the management of Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) has taken a new form, as the marketers have threatened to drag the Authority to court over its recent purported claims on the payment of N74 billion in transport claims to marketers.

Alhaji Bashir Danmalam, Chairman IPMAN Northern chapter,  made the threat while addressing a news conference in Kano on Thursday.

EnergyDay had on Wednesday reported that the management of NMDPRA claimed to have paid marketers N74 billion within the past seven months. However, the IPMAN Chairman, reacted as saying that the purported payment was not true, insisting that no IPMAN member has been paid. He confirmed that NMDPRA has only paid to “ghost marketers”.

Danmalam further challenged the management of the NMDPRA to publish the names of the marketers who benefited from the purported payment so as to prove their claims.

He said, “I’m surprised to hear the story on payment of the N74 billion claims by the Chief Executive of the Authority, Faruk Ahmed Maishanu. Either he was misinformed or he does not know what is happening in the organization.

“Who and who were paid the money? I know some of the marketers who are being owed N10 billion each. So for him to say that the agency paid N74 billion to marketers is not true.

“So, we can only agree with the said payment if the money was paid to “ghost marketers” or if it is part of the rejected waybill.

“The Federal Government should sack this man because he is not competent to hold such a sensitive position in view of the fact that he doesn’t know what is going on there,” Danmalam said.

The IPMAN Chairman however noted that the NMDPRA’s inability to settle the marketers transport claims amounting to about N500 billion was responsible for the persistent fuel shortage being experienced in the country. Danmalam claimed that the marketers have  discovered that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Ltd(NNPC) recently released over N70 billion to the NMDPRA, for the purpose of settling the marketers, but this according to him has not been affected.

While urging NNPC to call the Authority to order, he noted that the defunct Department of Petroleum Resources(DPR) has the pedigree of offsetting claims by IPMAN and others players in the product distribution chains, within one or two months as against the   mode of payment being deployed by NMDPRA.

Mr Farouk Ahmed, Chief Executive of the NMDPRA, had earlier claimed that the authority paid N71,233,712,991 bridging claims and another N2,736,179,950.84 freight differentials to oil marketers as of June 6, 2022.

The Authority’s Chief Executive(ACE) said that the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) received N9.96 billion while IPMAN members were paid N42.30 billion. He said NNPC retails received N6.66 billion while DAPPMAN members were paid N12.30 billion. which translated to a total of N73.97 billion.

He said the Chief Executive of the NMDPRA, Mr. Farouk Ahmed, at a meeting on May 17 with IPMAN discussed bridging payment extensively and the processes were explained and agreed upon by IPMAN.