The Federal Government has ordered that fuel stations close to the land borders should no longer get petroleum products. The directive is coming at a period government is tightening security and ensuring strict compliance to the border closure.
The directive was issued to the Nigeria Customs Service manning the land borders across Nigeria. The Customs Comptroller General, Hameed Ali, in a statement seen and obtained by Nairametrics, said that no petroleum product no matter the tank size should be permitted to be discharged in any of those filling stations. The affected oil companies are those located 20 kilometres to the borders.
Nairametrics had reported that the Nigerian Government was doubling down on its decision to keep the borders closed after it was announced that the closure would continue till January 2020. President Muhammadu Buhari approved the extension of the closure, stating that the need to achieve the strategic objectives of the exercise informed the decision.
Ali stated that, “The Comptroller-General of Customs has directed that henceforth no petroleum product no matter the tank size is permitted to be discharged in any filling station with 20 kilometres to the border.”
“Consequently, you are all to ensure strict and immediate compliance, please,” he added.
Why filling stations won’t get fuel: The filling stations located close to the borders have been accused of illegal export of petroleum products. In April 2019, Nairametrics reported that a tripartite committee consisting of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), and the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), was set up to tackle the growing smuggling of petroleum products to neighbouring countries.
The committee reported that some unlicensed filling stations along the borderline had been identified as being responsible for the smuggling of petroleum products. Recall that the border closure was prompted by rice and fuel smuggling activities. So with the new directive, the Federal Government is trying to block every loophole that could affect the positive impact expected from the border closure.
Countries like Benin and Ghana have pleaded with the Nigerian Government to open the borders as the impact has snowballed into a larger problem that isn’t connected to rice and fuel. Other businesses have also been affected.
Problem with the decision: The decision to stop distributing petroleum products to the filling stations close to the border could affect their daily operation and threaten the existence of the oil companies.
When there’s no longer fuel for the filling stations to meet the demand of their teeming customers, they could be forced to downsize and shut down operation. Already, non-oil companies are being affected. Nairametrics had reported how the border closure affected affecting revenue of So Fresh and hair products manufacturer, X-Pression. X-Pression has begun to cut its employees size by over 1000.
The Customs boss, however, said Nigerians should endure the pains as it would be for a short-term.
Branch International appoints Dayo Ademola as Managing Director in Nigeria
Branch International has appointed Dayo Ademola as Managing Director in Nigeria.
Branch International, the leading digital finance app with over 20 million users, has announced the appointment of Dayo Ademola as Managing Director in Nigeria, effective immediately.
Ademola, a leader with over fifteen years of experience in global, consumer-centric companies such as MainOne, Rosetta Stone (USA) as well as Union Bank amongst others, will lead the Branch team with the key focus to provide Nigerians with great value through quality modern financial services
In her new role in Branch, she is expected to leverage her experience as a financial services and technology leader, drawing from her established operational excellence in innovation, business strategy, customer segmentation, strategic marketing, product positioning, product development and business performance management.
What they are saying
While commenting on the announcement of her new role, the new MD talked about the nice offers of Branch and how impressive the services of the company are, Dayo Ademola said:
“I’m excited to join Branch because I love how the Branch app offers Nigerians a great deal. No other finance app offers a 20% investment yield (highest in Nigeria), zero-fee unlimited money transfers and instant loans with no paperwork, collateral or late fees.
“Branch’s all-in-one finance app can help everyday Nigerians simplify their financial life and get ahead. I’m excited to do my all to help everyone in the country become aware that there’s a better deal when it comes to your money.”
About Dayo Ademola
- Ademola earned a bachelor’s degree in International Business and Economics from Temple University, USA and a Global Executive MBA from INSEAD.
- Prior to joining Branch International, Dayo served as the Head of Innovation at EFInA, in this role she was responsible for the administration of EFInA’s multi-million-dollar Innovation Fund, funding licenced financial services providers as well as start-up and growth-stage fintechs, with an aim to boost financial inclusion in Nigeria.
About Branch International
- Branch International is a leading digital finance app with over 20 million users and offices across Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania and India.
- Branch continues to redefine digital finance as the platform with product features such as instant loans, free money transfers, bill payment and investment.
- Branch in the past three years of operation in Nigeria has processed over 40bn Naira in over 3 million loan transactions.
Conoil’s 30,000 bpd facility forced to shut down by host community
Conoil Producing Limited has had its crude oil production flow station at Ango field Bayelsa that it is operating shut down.
Indigenous oil exploration and production company, Conoil Producing Limited, has had a crude oil production flow station at Ango field in Koluama, Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State shut down by the host community.
This follows the protest by aggrieved members of the community over the oil firm’s insensitivity to its social obligations towards the people.
According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), the protesting members of the community had besieged the facility and told the oil workers to shut the facility and leave the site of the 30,000 barrels per day capacity flow station.
The oil workers at the onshore facility connecting oil wells within the swamps and creeks at Koluama were escorted out of the area by speedboats by armed security men.
What a community leader in Koluama is saying
A community leader in Koluama 1, Chief Young Fabby, on Tuesday, said that the facility was shut to protest the oil firm’s insensitivity to its social obligations to the people.
He said the aggrieved community shut operations at the flow station on Monday and sacked oil workers deployed to run the oil facility following Conoil’s failure to renew the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) which expired in 2020.
Chief Fabby said, “The Koluama clan was compelled to take the action following the refusal of the oil company to dialogue on several outstanding issues amongst which is the MoU which expired for more than one year.
“All entreaties through established channels have been rebuffed. Secretary of Koluama kingdom Oil/Gas Committee, Jonathan Amabebe, had drawn attention to the refusal of Conoil and this is regrettable,” he said.
Although officials of Conoil have yet to react to the incident, the Commandant of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) in the state, Mrs Christiana Abiakam-Omanu, confirmed the development.
She said that members of Conoil’s host communities were at the oilfield to protest, but that only the operator of the field (Conoil) could confirm if it was shut or not.
What you should know
- Conflicts between the oil-producing communities in the Niger Delta region of the country and the oil-producing firms have become quite regular and is a huge challenge to uninterrupted oil production in that area.
- The complaints by the host communities against these oil firms include environmental degradation, incessant oil spillages, neglect of their corporate social responsibilities and so on.
- This has often led to disruption/ stoppage of operations, closure of flow stations and rigs, vandalism/destruction of facilities, molestation/abduction of oil company staffs, temporary seizure of oil company assets like vehicles and boats and so on.
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