The Government of Liberia says it is working with petroleum importers to ensure that an emergency supply of petroleum products is brought into the country within the next 24 to 48 hours.
While admitting that the country is experiencing a serious shortage of petroleum products on the Liberian market, Information Minister Lenn Eugene Nagbe appealed to citizens to remain calm over the inconvenience they are experiencing and assured that the situation will soon be resolved.
Nagbe told State Radio ELBC in Monrovia on Wednesday that the government is using various sources, including petroleum importers, to bring in petroleum from some neighboring countries.
He said some importers of the commodity in Liberia are in partnership with those in neighboring countries and as such the government is using said medium to acquire an emergency supply that will ease the pressure on the market.
While working with some of the importers, Nagbe stated, “The government itself is going to bring in fuel and gasoline because we have observed that this is a national security issue so the government will host a national reserve so that we will always have four to five months fuel in reserve.”
He indicated that by the early part of next week, between Sunday to Monday, a larger vessel will be in the country with gasoline at the Freeport of Monrovia, explaining that the purpose of the emergency gasoline that is being sourced by government and some importers is to fill the gap between the next 24 to 48 hours through the period where more of the products will be available.
“We are going to provide the perfect solution that moving forward whether it is the administration of President George Manneh Weah or someone else, this situation will not be repeated, because the mechanism that will be put into place will not allow recurrence or a situation where our reserve will be totally depleted,” Minister Nagbe noted.
Commenting on earlier statements from the Ministry of Commerce in which Minister Wilson K. Tarpeh assured citizen that the country had enough petroleum products in reserve that turned out to be the contrary, Nagbe stated: “It is very important that we as a government communicate accurately to the public; it is our duty and obligation to give accurate and factual information to the public even if there is a crisis, because to not do that then you exacerbate the crisis.”
“It is true that the government announced that we had enough reserves but the Minister of Commerce made that statement based on the report given him and the data that was available… the Minister doesn’t go to the storage tank everyday to check how much fuel is available, the data that was given him was misleading,” Nagbe clarified.
Meanwhile, Nagbe has emphasized that the Government of Liberia empathizes with the public for the difficulty they have had to go through over the last couple of weeks in obtaining petroleum products from stations across the country, urging all to remain calm as the government finds a quick solution to the problem.