The Nigeria Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority says it will consider a request for fuel supply to fishermen in Cross River State’s Bakassi Local Government Area.
Mr. George Ene-Ita, Regional Coordinator of NMDPRA, South South, stated this when the Chairman of Bakassi local government area, Mr. Iyadim Iyadim, led a delegation of fishermen to his office.
Ene-Ita stated that he would write a proposal to the NMDPRA management in order to bring all critical stakeholders together to discuss the matter.
According to him, cross-border smuggling compelled the government to prohibit petroleum product lifting at fuel stations located 25 kilometers from the border.
“The policy is a stopgap measure to reduce cross-border smuggling.”
“In the interim, approval will be given and the modalities of the approval will be worked out by the NMDPRA regional office.
“Such approval will be subject to the condition of holding the representatives of the communities accountable for any product breach,” he said.
Earlier, the chairman informed the NMDPRA regional coordinator that the measure had reduced fishing activity.
He went on to say that because fishing was their main source of income, the fishermen required fuel to power their boats.
“At this point, our only option is to travel from Bakassi to Calabar to source petroleum products, and in most cases, our people have issues with security agents.”
“The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (Limited) floating station, which was supposed to serve coastal communities, has been out of commission for years,” he said.