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House of Reps sets to investigate discriminatory prices of petrol

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The House of Representatives has ordered the Committee on Petroleum Resources (Downstream) to investigate discriminatory practices by regulatory agencies against the Independent Petroleum Marketers on the sale of petrol

This followed a unanimous adoption of a motion moved by Rep. Abubakar Fulata (APC-Jigawa) at the plenary presided by the Deputy Speaker of the House, Mr Idris Wase on Wednesday.

The regulatory agencies are Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) Ltd. And the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA).

The mandate was given with a view to ensuring a uniform pricing regime for all concerned marketers.

The house noted that the PPMC and PPPRA were both subsidiaries of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.

It added that PPMC was saddled with the responsibility of coordinating the distribution of petroleum products in the downstream sector while PPPRA had the responsibility of fixing prices for petroleum products in the country.

“The house is aware that there are two blocs of marketers in the downstream sector; Major Marketers and the Independent Marketers,” he said.

The lawmakers, however, expressed concern that that PPMC, as the coordinator of petroleum products distribution in the downstream sector, was selling petrol to the two blocks at different prices.

“The PPMC is selling petrol to Major Marketers at N125.65k per litre and selling to the Independent Marketers at N133.28 per litre.

“The house is concerned that since members of the two blocs are selling the products to retailers in the same market, the discriminatory prices have been affecting the participatory capacity of the Independent Marketers in the market as well as impoverishing them against their counterparts in the sector,” he said,

The green chamber, however, urged the the need to check the discriminatory practices of the regulatory agencies “to give all concerned marketers a sense of belonging”.

The committee was also directed to report back to the house within four weeks for further legislative action.