Trade & Industry

Petroleum Marketers: release our members, trucks or strike

By Ifunanya Obeme

Petroleum Marketers in Rivers State have embarked in an indefinite strike over complains of incessant seizure of petroleum trucks by uniformed men of petroleum products from government approved depots.

The Rivers state government had on Monday intervened making the marketers call of the strike which lasted for 6 hours, reaching an agreement with the General Officer Commanding, GOC of the Nigerian army in Rivers State.

The strike which lasted for 6 hours on Monday was called off after the marketers were promised that 8 trucks will be released. The marketers however resumed the strike on Tuesday. They said the trucks promised to be released were never released and more trucks and products were seized.

The petroleum marketers in the state are calling on the Nigerian army to release four of their members who were arrested alongside the 16 trucks seized.

The petroleum trucks were according to the Nigerian army and the Rivers state task force, seized for carrying unrefined petroleum products popularly called “pofire”.

The groups have however disassociated themselves with marketers into illegal bunkery. They insist that the strike will continue until till their members and their trucks are released.

The groups involved in the shutting down of operations are; Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers, NUPENG, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, Licenced Independent Petroleum Products  Station Owners Association Rivers State, LIPPSOAR and Petroleum Tanker Drivers, PTD.

Petroleum customers in Rivers state are already beginning to feel the impact of the strike, as customers are seen standing locked outside filling stations in parts of the state.

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