The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has bemoaned occurrence of long queues in petrol stations across the federation, calling on the Federal Government to take urgent measures to check the ugly trend.
In a statement signed by President of TUC, Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama and Secretary, Comrade Musa Lawal, the union said the congress feels pained that this is happening, especially at a time when Nigerians are mourning the wanton killing of thousands of people in the North East of the country.
“We understand that some of the killed persons might have escaped their assailants but for the fact that there was no fuel for the vehicles that they might have used.
“The familiar trend of periodic scarcity of fuel is simply unacceptable. Nigeria remains about the sixth largest oil producing country in the world and “giant of Africa,” and one ordinarily expects this to translate to great fortune and comfort for the average Nigerian.
“Unfortunately this has not been the case as majority of the masses have remained impoverished in the midst of plenty. More depressing are reports that the scarcity is artificially created by the same cabal that has vowed not to see our ailing refineries work let alone have new ones built”, TUC said.
It noted that over the years, workers in the oil and gas sector and other well-meaning Nigerians have repeatedly bemoaned the state of refineries and called for new ones to be built but that successive administrations have paid deaf ears.
“Instead what we have had is gross mismanagement of the oil and gas industry to the extent that we neither know the quantity of crude produced daily nor how much the country really makes from the sector. Indeed, from all indications it may not be far-fetched to view the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) as the no. 1 conduit pipe for siphoning the national wealth”, the union said.
The congress called on government to x-ray the activities of the NNPC, marketers and everyone or organisation that has anything to do with the oil and gas industry so as to put an immediate end to the present scarcity of fuel and avert any recurrence of same in future.