The fuel scarcity situation in most parts of Nigeria especially in Abuja and Lagos, has worsened, as oil marketers have suspended the importation of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) into the country.
Some of the marketers told Vanguard that they took the drastic action, as the federal government has failed to pay them the money being owed.
An unnamed source in the Depot and Petroleum Products Marketers Association (DAPPMA) stated that a majority of the oil marketers are yet to be paid by the government, making it impossible for them to secure fresh funds from the banks to finance fuel importation.
The source also said:
“The money that the marketers were paid by the Federal Government was, according to the banks, like a tip of the iceberg, compared to the huge amount the marketers owe the banks. Majority of the marketers are not able to repay their indebtedness to the banks, making it impossible for them to secure new facilities from the banks to finance fuel import.
We want the Federal Government to pay the debt owed marketers as it is only then will we be able to repay our debts to the banks and secure fresh credit facilities from the banks to enable us finance our fuel import.
We have approval to import fuel, but we do not have money to finance the import. The banks told us that they have a ceiling for borrowing and they have reached their borrowing limit, with oil companies accounting for a substantial portion of the loans.
We are asking the Federal Government to pay us the claims we are being owed so that we can have money to offset our debts and finance fuel imports.”