by GEORGE OJI
Following Thursday’s resolution of the Senate to probe the lingering fuel scarcity in the country, the Joint Senate Committees on Petroleum Resources ( Upstream and Downstream ), which is saddled with the responsibility yesterday, summoned the Minister of Finance/Coordinating Minister for the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and her counterpart in the Petroleum Resources Ministry, Mrs. Deziani Allison-Madueke, to appear before it next week Monday.
Also directed to appear before the committee with the two ministers are, the Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Dr. Joseph Dawha; the Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Product Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Mr. Farouk Ahmed and the Director of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).
In addition, to appear before the probe committee, are the representatives of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria; Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria and the National Association of Road Transport Owners.
The summons were contained in a statement jointly issued in Abuja by the chairmen of the two committees, Senators Emmanuel Paulker (Upstream) and Magnus Abe (Downstream). It explained that the invitation of the public officers and groups, was as a result of the assignment given to them by the Senate.
The statement explained that the Deputy Senate Majority Leader, Senator Abdul Ningi, had on Thursday drawn the attention of the Senate to the lingering fuel scarcity in the country and the untold hardship on the generality of Nigerians. It added that Ningi had also urged the federal parliament to look into the matter with a view to finding the causes and lasting solution to the problem.
It stated that it was in view of the development that the Senate directed its committees on Downstream Petroleum sector and Petroleum Resources (Upstream), to investigate the matter and brief the Upper Chamber about their findings, next Tuesday.
The joint committee said the invitation extended to the affected individuals, agencies and groups was therefore necessary in order to obtain adequate information that would be needed to write their report for submission to the whole house.
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