Nigerian Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, has said the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Government has no control over the skyrocketing prices of cooking gas, which has reportedly hit N10, 200 per N12.5 kilogram (kg) in some parts of Abuja.
Mr. Sylva said this while fielding questions from State House reporters after introducing the CEO, Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, NMDPRA, Engr. Faruk Ahmed and the CEO, Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission NUPRC, Engr. Gbenga Komolafe, to the President at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Executive Secretary of National Association of LPG Marketers (NALPGAM), Bassey Essien, a member of Platforms Africa forum, has earlier alerted Nigerians during the Platforms Africa e-Discourse, that the prices of N12.5kg of LPG could hit N10,000 before December.
12.5kg Crosses N10,000 mark
Residents of Abuja, Nigeria’s administrative capital, have taken to the social media to lament the skyrocketing prices of the cooking gas.
Platforms Africa reports that they wondered why the same quantity bought with N4,000 at the beginning of the year has now crossed the N10,000 per 12.5kg mark.
Juliana Taiwo Obalonye, a journalist said on her Facebook page that she has just refilled her 12.5kg at the rate of N10,500, an update that elicited reactions and more revelations.
“I bought cooking gas for N10,500 today!!!
I smile because no matter how tough the jungle is, the lion will never eat grass!
God no go shame us!” Obalonye said.
Obalonye’s update on Facebook
One of the over forty comments that greeted her update came from Aries Asha Odey who also confirmed the N10,000 per 12.5kg price.
“My sister! This one shock me. To think that I bought gas #4800 beginning of this year and 3days ago I bought for N10000,” she wrote.
Government Has no Control over Surging Peices – Sylva
The minister, who said President Muhammadu Buhari was concerned over the development, stated that government cannot even subsidize the product because it was fully deregulated as gas prices are determined by the global market.
He said the government was doing everything possible to bring down the price especially during the yuletide.
Asked what the Federal Government was doing to minimize damage in Nembe, Bayelsa state, where there is oil spillage, he said Buhari had directed that he should visit the community to assess the situation.
On what was responsible for the resurfacing of queues in filling stations, the minister directed the CEO of the Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, Ahmed to answer it.
The NMDPRA CEO said the issues of the sale of PMS above the official ex-depot price of N148 and the marketers’ complaints about the payment for logistics in US dollars had been addressed at the stakeholders’ meeting.
Also speaking, the CEO, Nigerian Upstream Petroleum Regulatory Commission NUPRC, Engr. Komolafe said the full implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act had commenced by their appointment.
He expressed commitment to work towards enhancing our daily oil production, ensuring full digitization of the upstream activities for real-time monitoring purposes, introducing the Public-Private Partnership Initiative to boost revenue, and putting in place strategic plans to mitigate the expected challenges of the energy transition.
On his part, the CEO of Downstream said midstream and downstream would open up investments especially in the gas sector because of the abundance of unharnessed gas in this country.
He said people are now interested in working towards utilization of LPG, but observed that production was not commensurate with the demand.
He underscored the need to make regulations that would guide the way businesses were conducted, especially with so many extremes in the downstream sector.