The average price paid by consumers for premium motor spirit otherwise known as petrol slumped 0.3 percent month-on-month in February 2019 to N145.3, the lowest since October 2017, figures from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed.
Meanwhile, per litre cost of automotive gas oil or diesel on the average grew slightly month-on-month by 0.23 percent to N225.61 in February, the highest since the fifth month of 2017.
There was an increase in the number of states that sold petrol above the official pump price of N145, which stood at 24 in the review month, compared with 22 states in January.
Year-on-year, average per litre declined 15.8 percent to N145.30 in the review month compared with N172.50/ litre sold in the similar month a year earlier.
Taraba, the third largest state by land area, reported the highest average price of petrol at N150.55 in the review month, indicating 25.21 percent decline over N201.29 sold a year ago.
States with the least average prices in February include Ogun (N143.06), Imo (N143.18) and Ekiti (N143.47). These three states recorded contraction year-on-year as well as month-on-month.
Across regions, petrol sold the highest in the North-east (N145.74) followed by North Central (N145.53) and North-west (N145.41). Meanwhile, per litre price was below the N145 regulatory price in South-west (N144.90) and South-east (N144.98)
Recall that in May 2016, the Federal Government jerked up the pump price of fuel from N86.50 to N145 with the motive of boosting fuel availability, encourage investment in refineries and downstream and prevent diversion of petroleum product.
Last month, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) directed its members nationwide to reduce pump price from N145/litre to N140 in a bid to encourage Nigerians to exercise their franchise after the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) cancelled election six hours before votes on February 16.
Report for diesel showed that Borno, an insurgency-afflicted state, had the highest average price of diesel at N243.67, while Kwara at N239.55 and Osun at N237.14 ranked the 2nd and 3rd places diesel sold dear nationwide.
On the other hand, states with the lowest average price of diesel were Plateau N207.5, Ekiti N205.72, and Adamawa N204.38.
Lagosians paid N233.06, an increase both month-on-month and year-on-year by 0.98 percent and 14.51 percent respectively.
The product (diesel) sold the highest in the South-east region (N230.99) and cheapest in South-south and North-central at N222.64 and N220.88 respectively.