The Nigerian Association of Liquefied Petroleum Gas Marketers (NALPGAM) had said that sellers of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), known as cooking gas are exempted from the lockdown period.
The association in a statement issued on Wednesday in Lagos stressed that sellers of cooking gas are exempted from the lockdown announced by the federal government of Nigeria towards containing the Covid-19 pandemic.
NALPGAM, through its Executive Secretary, Mr. Bassey Essien noted that President Muhammadu Buhari had in a nationwide broadcast last Sunday announced the lockdown of Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) respectively.
He noted that some state governments followed suit by making related pronouncements barring human and vehicular movements within their States to contain the spread of coronavirus.
Essien noted the association obtained clarification from Lagos State Ministry of Energy and Resources on the inclusion of gas plants and retailer outlets as essential services to the citizenry, which will also help to avoid the overzealousness of security agents in enforcing the order.
According to him; “the Lagos State Government, through the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources, granted the approval that gas plants and cooking gas retailers and their personnel should be classified as essential service providers”.
Essien pointed out the government agreed that their product was essential in ensuring the sustainability of the people’s continued stay at home towards curtailing the spread of pandemic.
“The fact that people have to stay indoors for two weeks in the first instance, entails that households must cook and eat for the stay at home order to be effective.
“While the directive listed petroleum products and petrol stations as essential services, the association needed clarification on the status of gas filling plants and cooking gas retail outlets as cooking is essential to the survival of households.
“Therefore, LPG plants are part of the essential services and are thus exempted from the lockdown.
“They should thus be granted access to the smooth running of their facilities and operations and also free movement of their personnel from their homes to the facilities.”
Essien noted that they must, however, maintain all safety and hygiene measures put in place to curtail the spread of the virus, saying that their personnel must have their identity cards for ease of identification,” Essien said.
He, however, posited other States to emulate Lagos State government in exempting LPG retailers from the lockdown adding that a letter had been sent to the Nigeria Governor’s Forum in that regard.
Essien charged Nigerians to support the government by respecting and observing all the precautionary measures put in place to tackle the pandemic.
Editing by ‘Biodun Soyele
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