Fuel scarcity is biting harder in Abuja and its environs on Tuesday as long lines of vehicles dotted many filling stations across the Federal Capital Territory.
However, Daily Trust’s observation across Abuja early on Tuesday showed that there were disorders at a few filling stations selling the Petrol Motor Spirit (PMS).
At NNPC retail station at Central Area, Abuja, motorists struggled to get access to the station as only a small gate was opened to allow a car at a time access into the premises.
It was a similar situation at Total Filling station at Area 11, Jabi, Gwarinpa, and other areas, where black marketers have taken over with a little higher price.
A four-litre can fuel was sold between N1000 and N1200 by the black marketers.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) however blamed the scarcity on the EndSARS protest, saying the long queues would disappear at filling stations later on Tuesday.
The corporation’s spokesman, Dr Kennie Obateru, said many fuel marketers are now getting the product.
No cause for alarm – Marketers
On the reason for the scarcity in Abuja and environs, the Chief Executive Officer of Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), Mr Clement Isong said Petroleum Equalization Fund network was down.
“The issue has now been resolved. Trucks can now loadout from Suleja. Queues should quickly disappear”, he said.
However, findings by Daily Trust in Lagos on Tuesday showed that many filling stations still dispensed fuel at between N158-N160 with little or no queue at the filling stations.
Filling stations in parts of Ikeja, Agege, as well as the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway were still dispensing at the normal rate with no queue.
One of the marketers who spoke with Daily Trust on condition of anonymity said supply within Lagos is stable and there is no cause for alarm.
“When you visit most of the filling stations, you will discover that vehicles go in and come out without much hassle. So I can tell you no scarcity in Lagos as at today,” the marketer said.
A chieftain of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Mr. Abdulrasheed Olapade blamed the scarcity in some parts of the country on the recent #EndSARS protest.
The National Vice President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), Alhaji Abubakar Maigandi, said, “Lagos, which is the epicentre of the crisis, also harbours most of petrol depots.”
Maigandi said besides the curfew in Lagos, the marketers were afraid their truck might run into a cross-fire and probably be set ablaze.
He, however, said it could take some time but that there is availability of stock as he urged consumers to desist from panic buying.