The Association of Distributors and Transporters of Petroleum Products, ADTOP, has assured Nigerians of a steady supply of the Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, nationwide, despite the partial lockdown on the country over the Coronavirus pandemic.
Addressing journalists in Kano on Tuesday, the Zonal Chairman of the association, Bashir Dan-Mallam, said the assurance followed a resolution reached at the end of an executive meeting which they held online to review coronavirus trends and safety measures for their members.
According to the chairman, the association resolved to continue with the distribution of the products during the lockdown period so as to avoid scarcity which he described as amounting to adding insult to injury.
Mr Dan-Mallam said: “The association has resolved that all petroleum tanker owners should ask their drivers to adopt the preventive measures as outlined by the ministry of health.
“They must procure hand sanitizers, face mask, and soaps for their drivers. The drivers too must imbibe the culture of regular hand washing while at work or home,” the chairman added.
The association, therefore, called on the Group Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Mele Kyari, not to give a stay-at-home directive to the staff of the corporation, saying that doing so could plunge the country into fuel scarcity.
According to him, distributing petroleum products is now regarded as one of the essential services which should not be affected by the lockdown.
“We are pleading with the GMD not to order any of his staff to stay at home as directed by the federal government. If the NNPC comply with the government’s directive, there could be a shortfall in the supply of the petroleum product.
“We render essential services like health practitioners and security agents. Therefore, we call on the GMD not to order his staff to stay at home,” he pleaded.
Mr Dan-Mallam also disclosed that the meeting called on the GMD to order for the re-opening of all the government depots in order to ensure an adequate supply of petroleum products for the citizens.
“We also advised the tanker drivers to avoid congestion at depots to avoid the spread of the virus,” Mr Dan-Mallam added.