Agony as fuel scarcity hits Lagos | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Agony as fuel scarcity hits Lagos

Posted: Apr 29, 2015 at 3:00 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Temidayo Akinsuyi



It was a hellish experience for Lagosians on Tuesday as many residents, commercial buses and car owners besieged filling stations in search of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) otherwise known as petrol.

Entrances to filling stations in Lagos remained shut while black marketers flooded the streets with various shades of jerry cans advertising their products to those who are desperately in need of the scarce commodity.

Daily Independent findings shows that the few available filling stations who are selling charge customers extra fees from N100 to N500 depending on the size of jerry cans and amount of petrol needed.

At Oando filling station in Lawanson Bus Stop Surulere, the fuel attendants deducted N100 from anyone buying below N1, 000 worth of fuel, N200 for N2, 000 worth of fuel and N300 from N3, 000 and above.

When asked the reason for the deduction, a female attendant said they also purchased the fuel at exorbitant price so as to meet the needs of the residents. She added that contrary to the impression by customers that the extra fees charged was their idea, they were given orders to charge each customers who are in need of the product.

On Ikorodu road, many filling stations did not sell petrol but those that were open for business had long queues of motorists and residents with jerry cans to to contend with.

Although their pump prices remained N87 per litre, those selling sold at the rate of N100 per litre.

As always the case whenever there is scarcity, drivers of commercial buses and commercial motorcyclists popularly known as Okada riders capitalised on the situation to increase their fares.     For instance, fare for Ojuelegba to Ojota which was hitherto N150 became N200 while Ojota to Ogba, which was hitherto N100 was charged N150.

It was also gathered that the recent scarcity might not be unconnected with the threat by the major marketers under the aegis of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), who had threatened last weekend to stop importation over unpaid N350 billion subsidy claims.

It was also learnt that the major marketers import close to 60 per cent of petrol consumed in the country while the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) imports the balance.