Chinedu Okoronkwo, the President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, has urged the Federal Government to give more licences to marketers to ensure availability of Household Kerosene in the country.
Okoronkwo gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said the new N83 pump price for kerosene was a good development in the right direction.
NAN recalled that Petroleum Products Pricing Agency on January 24 in its pricing template increased the price of HHK from N50 to N83.
The PPPRA said the increase was in line with the price modulation announced by the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu.
Okoronkwo said: “The truth is that this government is showing a level of sincerity.
“We now know how much the product is bought and how much it should be sold.
“IPMAN has seen a level of sincerity and so we commend the effort.”
Okoronkwo, however, stressed the need for government to ensure availability of the products in the benefit of the consumers.
He called on the Department of Petroleum Resources to issue more licences to marketers to enable them to import and circulate the product.
He said government should issue licences to encourage people to build mini refineries.
According to him, this will go a long way to improve on the nation’s economy and bring about development in the oil and gas sector.
Meanwhile, mixed reactions have trailed the new pump price for HHK by some consumers and retailers.
Some consumers who spoke to NAN said it was a good development while others said that it would inflict more hardship on the poor masses.
Agnes Idema, a trader, said kerosene was being sold at N120 even when the official pump price was N50, expressing fears that it would go higher.
Idema said: “Right now, I buy kerosene at N120 per litre from sellers who spend days at NNPC fuel stations to get the product for N50.
“I hope it will not make it more expensive.”
Idema called on government to ensure the availability of the product so that people can buy at the official price from all fuel stations.
Martins Chukwu a civil servant, said the plan by government to modulate the price of kerosene was commendable.
Chukwu said: “I think what government has done is to remove subsidy paid on HHK.
“This will save some money for the government.”
Amina Yusuf, a widow, said: “If the price is N83 and I find it to buy, that will be very good.
“Right now, I use soar dust to cook.
“It is cheaper for me because I cannot afford to buy kerosene.”
Yusuf called on the government to ensure that its policy does not inflict more suffering on ordinary Nigerians.