Depot owners appear to have jettisoned the pricing template of Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, PPPRA, thereby sabotaging efforts of Federal Government to end the lingering fuel crisis. Vanguard learned that depot owners, especially those used by Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, for throughput arrangement, jettisoned the current PPPRA pricing template for petroleum products released on April 1, and, instead, have been using the pricing template for the first quarter of the year. For example, the present PPPRA pricing template for ex-depot collection price is N76. However, no marketer gets the product at that price, as they pay up to N120 per litre, apart from the thousands of Naira given, underhand, to security agents to facilitate the entry of their trucks. *File photo Consequently, marketers add up these costs which are passed on to motorists, who buy the product between N150 and N200, as against the official price of N86.50k. According to the President, National Association of Road Transport Owners, NARTO, Mr. Kassim Bitaya, the current fuel scarcity ravaging the various parts of the country was caused by PPPRA. He said: “I expected that PPPRA should have called a stakeholders’ meeting like they did in the past before rolling out pricing templates. Rather, what we discovered was that they just rolled out the template without carrying the stakeholders along.” He explained that the pricing template was calculated based on the official exchange rate of N197, adding that no marketer had access to foreign exchange to bring in products at that rate, a development that resulted in many marketers jettisoning the idea of importation. “The pricing template, as presently designed, is faulty because some components ought not to be there in the first place, while some need to be reviewed either downward or upward,” he added. Meanwhile, the President of the Nigeria Association for Energy Economics, NAEE, Professor Wumi Iledare, said the Federal Government made a mistake setting the price of petrol at N86.50k per litre, saying deregulation is the best solution to the lingering fuel scarcity.