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An official of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Mr. Chinedu Okoronkwo, have given reasons to justify his claim as National President of the association.

He said this whole speaking to journalists in Abuja, where he stated that a well conducted election by the association on May 10, 2014, affirmed him as National President.

There have been controversies as to who leads the association long before now and it was therefore no surprise when three of the IPMAN officials introduced themselves as national presidents at the public hearing on fuel scarcity two days ago at the National Assembly.

Obasi Lawson introduced himself first, followed by Sanusi Fari and then Chinedu Okoronkwo.

“I am Okoronko Chinedu, elected IPMAN Chairman and have been affirmed by the Appeal Court just two week ago,” Mr. Okoronkwo said much to the surprise of the audience.

Recently, the Appeal Court in Abuja declared Mr. Okoronkwo as the national president much to the commendation of members of IPMAN.

IPMAN’s national secretary, Danladi Passali, earlier said that the Appeal Court re-affirmed the judgment of the Federal High Court, Federal Capital Territory, in the suit No FCT/HC/CV/1479/2016 and that the lower court in its judgment delivered on May 28, 2014, upheld the election of IPMAN National Executive committee, conducted on May 10, 2014.

While explaining to newsmen, Mr. Okoronkwo stressed that the past executives have refused to honor the court’s judgment.

“I was elected national president after the election on the 10th of May, 2014 and prior to that period, when the outgoing administration was to leave power by may 2014, one Obase went to court without any cause of action that he should be declared president of the association, for no reason.

“It happened that the judgement was delivered but the judge said he should be the president of the first defendant (and that is the board of trustees of the association).

“The same day, the BoT filed an appeal and pending the determination of that case, he was not supposed to do anything.

“What he did was to bring in thugs from Port Harcourt and Abuja to burgle IPMAN’s office and beat people up and down.

“The tenure of that administration ended and this election that brought me in was called; meaning by a fusion of time, he has nothing again to do.

“After the election, we decided to take legal steps asking him not to disturb us. Giving the fact that the tenure of Aminu Abdulkair has expired, the court ruled that our election was in order and he was asked not to disturb us.

“He was not happy with the ruling, so he went to appeal court. On the 7th, the appeal court affirmed that our election was in order. I was surprised to see him yesterday in total disregard for an appellant court decision”, he said.

Mr. Okoronkwo stated that he was invited to the public hearing, “I don’t know if the other two were invited there”, he said.

Recalling his years of service tk the associationas well as positions he has held, he said, “I was once the national official representing the eastern block of this association, the national legal adviser, the vice president.

“I was also the acting president when Aminu went on medical leave. I have served this association long before now. I don’t even know where some of them are coming from.”

Speaking in the causes of the recent fuel scarcity, he said that “the local refinery capacity is not enough to carry what we can use here.”

“Refining this crude locally is the best answer. They are working on ways to improve the system so that more things will be done locally and Nigeria must appreciate the fact that the crude is going up and we are gaining dollar right now. The increase in the crude price also affected the importation.

He further kicked against increase in the price of fuel, adding that it would have a negative effect on the economy.

“At this time, I don’t support increase in price of fuel. Any increase right now will have a negative resultant effect on the economy. The 145 non negotiable. That is why the committee is working to remove some things in the template that is making the price rise”, he said.

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