President Muhammadu Buhari was said to have yesterday expressed anger over the contaminated petrol in circulation across the country, a development that has disrupted the nation’s fuel supply chain for several days.
The president was said to have therefore ordered that the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), Mr. Farouk Ahmed, should be queried immediately.
Buhari, who was said to be visibly worried over the situation, leading to the return of long fuel queues in parts of the country, especially in Abuja, Lagos, Ogun, Port Harcourt and others, instructed the Minister of State, Petroleum, Mr. Timipre Sylva, to ask Ahmed to explain how the product came into the country.
An impeccable presidency source revealed that Buhari felt that the first point to begin to unravel how the product came into the country and invariably began circulating should be the agency, which by law acts as the “police” of the downstream and midstream sector.
The Authority was created in August 2021 in line with the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) and encompasses a merger of three defunct regulatory agencies: Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Petroleum Equalisation Fund (Management) Board (PEFMB), and the Midstream and Downstream Divisions of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).
It is responsible for the regulation of the midstream and downstream petroleum operations in Nigeria which includes technical, operational, and commercial activities.
According to the source, who asked not be named, the minister who was at the Presidential Villa to brief the president, following the growing outrage over the issue, was directed to, in a short while, send the query to the CEO of the agency
“This matter has become an embarrassment to this government. There’s no question that these cargoes of petrol were bad, so he (Ahmed) is being queried over how the fuel came into the country and the president has so instructed,” the presidency source explained