Fuel scarcity hits Abuja, five other states as queues return

Onwubuke Melvin
Onwubuke Melvin

There were Long queues as many filling stations were closed in Abuja and about five other states on Wednesday as a result of scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit, also known as petrol.

Thousands of commuters in the Federal Capital Territory, Nasarawa, Niger, Gombe, Sokoto, and Anambra states, due to the scarcity of PMS were left stranded at various bus stops, according to The Punch.

This has led to an increase in transport fares in the affected states, as the few transporters who had petrol raised their rates.

It was reported that the scarcity was caused by a shortage of PMS in the FCT and other states.

However, oil marketers have announced a meeting with the management of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited’s retail subsidiary today Thursday to know why there is a shortage and how it will be addressed.

Hundreds of motorists thronged around the Conoil and Total filling stations that sold petrol in front of the corporate headquarters of NNPC in Abuja on Wednesday.

Consequently, there was a gridlock in the central business district of Abuja on roads leading to NNPC’s head office and adjacent companies.

Similarly, there was no product to sell at the NNPC outlet located on Arab Road in Kubwa, Abuja. There have also been numerous closures of shops in the vicinity of the Kubwa-Zuba expressway. Many filling stations have been shut down in Nyanya, Nasarawa State.

However, oil marketers stated that investigations were ongoing into the reasons for the lack of petroleum products supply to Abuja and neighbouring states and that a meeting would be held Thursday.

The National Secretary, of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Chief John Kekeocha, said “It is obvious that there is a supply shortage in Abuja and other states that are close to the FCT.

“This is the reason why many filling stations in these areas are not selling PMS, which, of course, has led to the serious queues you see in the few ones that are dispensing the product. I cannot tell you the reason for this supply shortage now.

“But we are meeting with NNPC Regal tomorrow (Thursday), and this is going to form part of our discussions. The matter is being looked into right now, and we hope to find a solution to it during the meeting.”

Commenting earlier, the National President of IPMAN, Abubakar Maigandi, said that when the Dangote Petroleum Refinery started pumping petroleum products into the domestic market, petrol queues would no longer be common in many states.

However, Maigandi said they don’t know when exactly the Dangote refinery will start selling PMS.

“So we are still waiting and we know that once he starts releasing petrol to the domestic market, this issue of fuel scarcity and queues will become a thing of the past,” he said.

Meanwhile, the IPMAN National Public Relations Officer, Chief Ukadike Chinedu, said that the Port Harcourt Refining Company would start producing refined petroleum products very soon.

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