NMDPRA Disburses N103.0bn for Bridging Claims in Nine Months
By Adedapo Adesanya
The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) has disclosed that it disbursed N103.0 billion as bridging claims to oil marketers in nine months; between December 2021 and August 2022.
Bridging claims is one of the cost elements factored into the petroleum products pricing template to ensure uniformity of prices across the country. It usually caters for the cost of transporting the products from one location to another.
In a statement in Abuja, the NMDPRA disclosed that it will continue to carry out its mandate as stipulated in the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA), which includes promoting and ensuring the continuous and efficient operations of the Midstream & Downstream sector in Nigeria.
To this end, it stated that together with the NNPC Limited, it met with the leadership of the Northern Independent Petroleum Marketers Forum (NIPMF) to address issues bordering on financial obligations and payments to the marketers and also avert impending strike action by the marketers.
The NMDPRA said that the meeting with the marketers addressed issues regarding bridging claims and other matters.
It allayed concerns of the marketers regarding non-payment of the claims, stating that the payment of bridging claims is an ongoing process, while payments are also disbursed as it is received from marketers.
The midstream and downstream regulator said: “It should be noted that The Authority has disbursed a total of N103.037 billion between December 2021 to August 2022.
“Following the extensive deliberations between the parties, The Authority further commits to fast-track the settlement of all outstanding claims when received from marketers after due verification and reconciliation. NIPMF has agreed to work with the NMDPRA to ensure the free flow of petroleum products nationwide.
The NMDPRA also said it has met with officials of the Northern Independent Petroleum Marketers Forum (NIPMF) in a bid to address the issues of outstanding bridging claims owed the oil marketers.
On Monday, oil marketers, under the aegis of the Northern Independent Petroleum Marketers Forum, had embarked on a three-day warning strike over unpaid bridging claims running into billions of Naira.
The Chairman of the group, Mr Musa Maikifi had stated that its members will withdraw their services of lifting and distribution of petroleum products from the nine depots under it jurisdiction to states across the Northern region.
Mr Maikifi said the warning strike became imperative to further press home its demand for the federal government to settle its claims.
He said the claims have continued to accumulate as the government was yet to pay any of the marketers since January till date.