Scarcity: NNPC counters MRS, says marketer, three others imported adulterated fuel


Group Managing Director of NNPC, Mele Kyari

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited has countered MRS Oil Nigeria Plc as regards the recent importation of adulterated Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, into the country.

NNPC’s Group Managing Director, Mele Kyari, named MRS and three other dealers as the firms that imported the contaminated products into Nigeria. This was, however, in contrast to the position of MRS.

A speech shared to selected broadcast media quoted Kyari as saying, “On January 20, 2022, NNPC received a report from our quality inspector on the presence of emulsion particles in PMS cargoes shipped to Nigeria from Antwerp-Belgium.

“NNPC investigation revealed the presence of Methanol in Four (4) PMS cargoes imported by the following DSDP suppliers namely:

“Importer vessel name load port,
1. MRS MT Bow Pioneer LITASCO Terminal, Antwerp-Belgium; 2. Emadeb/Hyde/AY Maikifi/Brittania-U Consortium MT Tom Hilde; 3. Oando MT Elka Apollon; 4. Duke Oil MT Nord Gainer.”

He said cargoes quality certificates issued at load port (Antwerp-Belgium) by AmSpec Belgium indicated that the gasoline complied with Nigerian specification.

Kyari said NNPC quality inspectors including GMO, SGS, GeoChem and G&G conducted tests before discharge also showed that the gasoline met Nigerian specification.

“As a standard practice for all PMS import to Nigeria, the cargoes were equally certified by inspection agent appointed by the Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority has met Nigerian specification.

“It is important to note that the usual quality inspection protocol employed in both the load port in Belgium and our discharge ports in Nigeria do not include the test for per cent methanol content and therefore the additive was not detected by our quality inspectors.”

He noted that in order to prevent the distribution of the petrol, NNPC had ordered the quarantine of all un-evacuated volumes and the holding back of all the affected products in transit (both truck and marine).

“All defaulting suppliers have been put on notice for remedial actions and NNPC will work with the authority to take further necessary actions in line with subsisting regulations,” Kyari stated.

But MRS had on Wednesday denied any involvement in the imports of the adulterated products, as it explained that methanol was prohibited in petrol imported into Nigeria.

It said, “Due to current subsidy regime, NNPC is the sole supplier of all PMS in Nigeria. Consequently, NNPC through their trading arm Duke Oil, supplied a cargo of PMS purchased from international trader Litasco and delivered it with Motor Tanker Nord Gainer.

“This vessel discharged in Apapa between the January 24 and 30, 2022 and the following major marketers with receiving quantities were the recipients of the product:
OVH, 10,000 metric tonnes; MRS, 5,000MT; NIPCO, 5,958MT; ARDOVA, 6,000MT; Total, 10,000MT.”

The company stated that being one of the beneficiaries, MRS received the product in its depot and distributed the product to only eight of its stations in Lagos.

It explained that following delivery into tank, it was observed that the product appeared hazy and dark, adding that the management of MRS immediately directed that further sale(s) should be stopped and the
product isolated.

The firm further stated that the allegation against MRS that it imported contaminated products, was therefore mischievous, false and untrue.

“MRS is not an importer of this contaminated PMS into the country, nor does MRS sell substandard products,” it stated. (Punch)

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