By News Desk
Queues have started returning to filling stations in Badagry and other communities after National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers of Nigeria (NUPENG) suspended distribution of fuel to axis indefinitely over continued extortions by military personnels.
The Guild gathered that since the Union directed its members to halt operations to the axis, several filling stations within the axis especially those on Lagos-Badagry Expressway have been forced to shut their premises after efforts to get products proved abortive.
It was further learned that plans have been concluded to extend the suspension to other parts of Lagos if nothing is done to correct the alleged injustice been perpetrated by Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) and others to their members.
Chairman, South-West Chapter of the union, Tayo Aboyeji, who disclosed the suspension to newsmen in Badagry on Saturday, lamented that the suspension became necessary after several appeals to the military personnel to stop harassment and molestation of its members fell on deaf ears.
The chairman said that the customs under the Joint Border Patrol operations arrested a tanker driver who missed its way in Badagry, impound the truck and drove it to its command in Ikeja.
“A tanker driver from Port Harcourt was sent to Badagry to deliver petroleum to a station, unfortunately, he missed his way and while asking for direction, the tanker driver was arrested by the men of joint border patrol.
“The tanker was taken to FOU in Ikeja. I wrote to the Controller on the issue and met DC Enforcement on the matter and I was directed to the Officer in Charge of Legal issues in same office. The Officer in Charge of Legal told me that he had not received the file from joint patrol operation office and promised to call me later.
“But surprisingly, our enforcement unit in Agbara stopped a tanker to check his paper to find out if its delivery documents were intact, but there were errors in his documents,” he said.
Aboyeji said that the NUPENG enforcement team thought it was a stolen product, adding that they did not know that it was a product that was under investigation that had been sold to a buyer.
” Thinking that it was a stolen product, they drove it to Area K Police Command in Morogbo. I wrote a petition to the Lagos State Commissioner of Police as regard to the incident.
“Surprisingly, soldiers under the drilling exercise came to police station beat my members and forcefully drove away from the tanker with its contents. We later heard that the tanker was used to remove the petroleum of a filling station in Badagry that had been sealed since Feb.1.
“Both the products and the tanker have not been found, this is not done in a civilized society, a product under investigation to be sold out just like that. So an injury to one is an injury to all,” he added.
Meanwhile, all efforts to contact the Spokesman for FOU Zone A Ikeja, Jerry Attah, to react to the allegations proved abortive as he did not respond to calls and messages sent to him.