The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA), Mr. Farouk Ahmed, has been asked to resign over his role in the importation of adulterated Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) currently in circulation in Nigeria, barely four months after his appointment.
Also asked to resign within seven days is the Group Managing Director (GMD) of the newly established Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited, Mallam Mele Kyari, for negligence.
A pro-Nigeria Civil Society Organization (CSO) known as NIGERIA FIRST, in a statement on Friday morning by its National Coordinator, Mr. Augustine Richard-Adie, and the Board of Trustees Chairman, Chief Philip Agbese; said the inactions of both heads of regulatory agencies have caused Nigerians untold hardship and brought serious embarrassment to President Muhammadu Buhari.
“The two CEOs of the above agencies, which are products of the PIA, have been fingered as those whose negligence was responsible for what Nigerians are currently suffering.
“The importation of the adulterated fuel has caused more harm than good and it is clear that these individuals should therefore resign immediately.
“They have to go immediately to save the President any further embarrassment and to keep his legacy in office”, the statement read.
The group lamented that it is unfortunate that Buhari’s administration that has cured fuel queues in the last six years would be dented at a time that the President was about exiting office.
“We, therefore, give them seven days ultimatum to leave office and save the President of any further embarrassment”, it added.
It would be recalled that both the GMD NNPC and the CEO of NMDPRA, at separate press briefings on Tuesday, confirmed the importation of adulterated Premium Motor Spirit by some oil marketers.
The GMD NNPC said his investigation has revealed the presence of Methanol in four petrol cargoes imported by MRS, Emadeb/Hyde/AY Maikifi/Brittania-U Consortium, Oando and Duke Oil.
The NMDPRA Boss, on his part, told journalists on Tuesday that, “petrol with methanol quantities above Nigeria’s specification, was discovered in the supply chain”, adding that, “Methanol is a regular additive in petrol and is usually blended in an acceptable quantity”.
This has been responsible for the return of long fuel queues in parts of the country, especially in Abuja, Lagos, Ogun, Port Harcourt and other cities, since the beginning of this week.
Seriously embarrassed by the situation, President Buhari had reportedly instructed the Minister of State, Petroleum, Mr. Timipre Sylva, to immediately issue a query to NMDPRA Boss, Ahmed, to explain how the product came into the country.
Also, the House of Representatives, on Thursday, through a motion by the Chief Whip, Rep. Tahir Monguno, ordered urgent investigation into the importation of adulterated PMS and to also ascertain the roles played by the two regulatory agencies in the seaports.