By Joseph Kingston, Calabar
The National Vice Chairman, South-South Zone of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) Ntufam Hilliard Eta, has expressed worry over the lingering fuel crisis in the country, charging state government functionaries to support efforts by the federal government to address the situation.
Eta, in a press statement by his media aide, Bassey Ita, said “what the current crisis would bring to the society cut across economic and social strata. Apart from the untold hardship it brings, there are many cases of fire inferno because you have so many unregulated filling stations everywhere. And this, therefore, becomes a disaster lurking around the streets, homes and citadels.”
He blamed the situation on sabotage as well as the refusal of state governments to put pressure on relevant stakeholders in the industry to demonstrate the sincerity.
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According to him, “if the state governments, in concert with other relevant agencies of government including the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), put pressure on the product marketers in their respective states to sell petrol according to the official rates, we would have solved the issues of long queues arising from artificial scarcity and price hike.”
He said his reaction to the issue was to further create awareness that “the APC– led government of President Muhammadu Buhari means well for their welfare and progress but saboteurs are at work to cause them untold hardship as well as discredit the goodwill of the APC government.”
While commending the federal government for refusing to yield to pressure to increase pump price of petrol, the APC chieftain opined that the states should ensure that official rates apply while hoarding and diversion should not be contemplated among marketers.
He said that strict monitoring of the movement and sale of the product would ensure that petrol was available for every Nigerian, saying governors should ensure that “the goodwill of President Buhari trickles down to the nooks and crannies of the country.”