Petrol scarcity: Buhari is in a “catch 22” scenario. I don’t envy him..

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President Buhari is the Petroleum minister. However, he has refused to do “deals” in the Nigerian sense. If you are heading the petroleum ministry in Nigeria, you must do deals or encourage boys to do the deals. If not, you are on your own. The NNPC cult would make you regret ever being there. Make no mistake about it; NUPENG and PENGASSAN are in the same boat with NNPC.


To make matters worse, the President went for TSA with the kind of vigour not ever seen in the country. Mind you TSA has been around but was poorly implemented. He came in and went for it. The truth about Nigeria economy is this: TSA stopped people from accessing government funds the way they were used to. Will there be a blow back? Of course you are seeing it already. The system is grounded. No money!!


IF TSA hasn’t come into the fore of the issue at hand, no one would be interested in whether the national budget is passed or not. If, as a director in a ministry or Agency of government, I could make myself a signatory to any of the revenue accounts, what is my business with when budget is passed? The agency would continue collecting government revenues into the account that I control and I will be junketing with my goons. With TSA, it is wahala and Buhari is the wahala.


I am still trying to find out how you can cleanse NNPC and NUPENG. They are together I tell you. They can blow all the grammar in this world to confuse who they want to confuse. Buhari seems scared of dealing with them. Kachukwu has been indoctrinated into the caucus. Nigerians are now at the mercy of these monsters.  Let’s be clear: Petrol scarcity will persists until the cult in NNPC and NUPENG decides otherwise. 


It is a no brainer to understand I tell you. Crude oil price has fallen sharply to around $40/barrel(Remember we had oil subsidy protest when it was on $120/barrel), so  no one would tell you that it is expensive to import petrol. Additionally, Government is the 100% importer of petrol as the oil marketers didn’t have money because of TSA. Government is trying to entice them with “subsidy” as we speak but I doubt that’s their only grouse. They want TSA relaxed, shikena!! So as we speak, the sole importer of petrol into the country is NNPC. Now where do you situate the crisis? It’s very clear where the problem lies. The problem is NNPC and if you cannot solve NNPC then the problem would persist.



If you want to solve NNPC issue, NUPENG would threaten strike. If you want to privatize the refineries in an open manner, NUPENG would call her members into action. NNPC wants government to continually throw money into the sinkholes called refineries. If Government doesn’t do that, they sabotage whatever remains of their production. It is a circus I tell you.


There are two ways to solve this issue. I must confess that both ways present a “catch 22” scenario. None of the ways is really easy as this is a systemic issue I tell you. The first way is to dissolve NNPC or trim down her operations and face NUPENG and PENGASSAN head on.  However, would Nigerians support Government in her fight against NUPENG? Can Nigerians sustain a fight with the NUPENG cult? I am not too sure. This represents the surest way to fight this systemic malaise.


The second one is for government to continue the implementation of subsidy payments no matter how dubious. Allow NNPC to continuously have his ways while the TSA would be relaxed so that “boys can chop and be big boys again”.  It entails Buhari allowing people to “whack and whack”. Forget all the big grammar in the news. It essentially means open door policy to the treasury. it doesn’t matter the crude oil price.


Also, leave the grammar of diversification of income, Nigeria in the past 40 years has been built solely on crude oil and I don’t see an immediate change.  So it means NNPC still holds the ace. The ability to confront the monster called NNPC and NUPENG would be very critical if Buhari wants to succeed.


The Government cannot sit on the fence in this issue. It is either you fight or negotiate with the “cultists”. Any attempt to dither and wish it just goes away would not work. I really don’t envy Buhari oo!!


So when next you see yourself at the petrol queue, remember a name that you can’t ignore: NNPC. Ewolewoo!!

About the author / 

Ik Uremeh

Ik uremeh is a social commentator who believes that everyone deserves to live within the confines of his strengths. He is just like YOU.He says: Life is good when everyone desires so...

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