The President of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Senior Staff Association of Nigeria, Festus Osifo, has advised the Federal Government to focus on completing the Port Harcourt refinery rather than focus on the Dangote refinery.
He said, "We should rather focus on making other refineries work because it would cut down on freight rates from importation, and would reduce prices.
"Dangote is a private businessman and can decide tomorrow that he would not refine again, although the government has a 20 per cent stake in the refinery.
"We should rather push for our own refineries, and ask the government the question such as; when is the Port Harcourt refinery going to start refining petrol?"
This is even as Dangote Refinery is yet to begin production, weeks after the promised August commencement date.
This is despite earlier statements by the President of the Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, that the refinery would be producing its first products by the end of July or beginning of August.
Spokesperson for the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Garba Deen, had said in June that the company would cut down its fuel imports programme in August, once the Dangote Refinery began to push out refined petroleum products.
However, no drop of refined petroleum product from the refinery has hit the market yet.
According to The PUNCH, a source at the refinery said that the management was unsure of when petrol refining would begin at the Ibeju-Lekki facility.
The source, who was not authorized to speak, said, "For now, the management has not come out with any official date."
However, National Controller Operations of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Mike Osatuyi, also said there was no cause for alarm as far as petrol supply was concerned as the NNPCL was still importing.
According to him, management of the Dangote refinery may have delayed production, due to some internal challenges