Two years after the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) depot at Osisioma Aba, Abia state was re-activated, the Abia state government and the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) have expressed deep concern over alleged plans to cripple the depot.
The depot at Osisioma was reactivated on July 9, 2012 seven years after it was shut down by NNPC on account of pipeline vandalism. Since then the difficulties associated with supply and distribution of petroleum products in Abia and neighbouring states have eased.
But, in a joint press conference Abia government and IPMAN raised the alarm that the depot was being starved of petroleum products; thereby pushing it back to the dreadful period experienced in the past.
They pointed accusing fingers at two Port Harcourt-based firms, Port Harcourt Electric Distribution Company (PHEDC) and Indorama Eleme Petro-Chemical Ltd that allegedly conspired to starve Osisioma depot of petroleum products.
Abia state Commissioner for Petroleum and Solid Minerals Development, Chief Don Ubani, described the action of the two Port Harcourt-based companies as “sabotage” given that the depot was resuscitated through the collaboration of Abia state and federal government in order to make petroleum products available and affordable within the depot’s area of operation.