By Victor Ogunje in Ado Ekiti
As the petrol crisis rocking Ekiti State becomes messier, the state Council of Traditional Rulers and Council of Elders have pleaded with the striking petrol marketers to suspend their three-week-old industrial action and return to work to prevent the state’s economy from total collapse.
The statesmen regretted that the situation whereby petrol was being openly hawked by black marketers portrays serious danger for the state aside from the economic crisis the state had been plunged into since the petrol supply to Ekiti was stopped by the Nigerian Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) and Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN).
Meanwhile, THISDAY gathered that as a condition for the resolution of the impasse, the marketers would table before the mediating groups the rebuilding of the two petrol stations damaged by hoodlums.
Some suspected thugs had last week attacked two petrol stations belonging to members of IPMAN in Ado Ekiti, which the union had said was allegedly orchestrated by the state government based on Governor Ayodele Fayose’s earlier comment that some transporters would have vandalised some petrol stations but for his intervention.
The Secretary General of the Elders Council, Mr. Niyi Ajibulu, said the parley with the marketers held at the palace of Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejugbe, on Saturday was attended by IPMAN members, led by Chief Remi Oguntuase, three other prominent traditional rulers and many elder statesmen.