Bleak Christmas Ahead in Southeast, South South as IPMAN threatens Strike Over FG’s Refusal to Pay ‘Bridging Claims’
It may be a bleak Christmas in Southeast and South South states as the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has threatened to withdraw their services on the none payment of their “bridging claims” by the Nigerian Downstream/Midstream Petroleum Regulatory agency.
IPMAN in a statement issued on Sunday claimed the federal government has refused to pay the bridging claims to their members in the Southeast, South South and some North Central states even when their colleagues in the Northwest and Northeast have been fully paid up-to-date.
The petroleum marketers said that the decision to withdraw their services was part of the outcome of their meeting held in Owerri, Imo State on November 16, 2023.
They said that their members were at the verge of losing their properties to banks that guaranteed loans for them.
Part of the statement reads:
“We the entire members of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Eastern Zone comprising of marketers in the mentioned states- Abia, Anambra, Akwa Ibom, Benue, Bayelsa, Cross River, Ebonyi, Enugu, Imo, Kogi and Nasarawa resolved on the following after a meeting of the zone held in our Zonal office at Owerri on the 16th of November 2023.
“That the Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Downstream/Midstream Petroleum Regulatory should as a matter of urgency pay us our bridging claims having done so to our colleagues in the North-West and North-East Zones since the subsidy removal regime on the 29th of May 2023 without any Kobo owed them.
“This resolution is further necessitated by the fact that despite correspondences sent to the Chief Executive Officer on this issue, he has refused to release funds or respond to the letters.
“In view of this as stated above, we are appealing to the Honourable Minister of state for petroleum for his immediate intervention to not only save our business but save our members from losing their properties used as collaterals from banks where these monies are tied down with defunct Petroleum Equalization Fund (PEF).”
“we state equivocally that since we cannot fold our hands and see our hard earned properties taken away by the banks, if the monies are not released to us as done to the other zones by the end of November 2023, we will have no other option than to withdraw our services from the general public.”