• Saturday, April 20, 2024
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Fuel scarcity hits Lagos as supply hitches disrupt distribution

Fuel scarcity bites deeper as motorists groan

Long queues and frustration have returned to Lagos as fuel scarcity gripped the metropolis, disrupting transportation and daily activities for many residents.

On Tuesday, BusinessDay’s findings showed most filling stations in Lagos including major energy marketers outlets, were shut to motorists.

A visit to key areas like Ikeja, Ikorodu, and Lagos Island revealed a stark picture. Once bustling filling stations stand deserted, their pumps idle and tanks empty.

The few that opened to the public had long queues of vehicles at their pumps; most of the stations dispensing petrol did so using only one pump, thereby aggravating the queues.

Motorists express their anger and disappointment, narrating tales of spending hours in queues only to be turned away. Many fear the situation will worsen, impacting their livelihoods and daily routines.

Responding to the development, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited explained the cause of the long queues in some filling stations in Lagos State was due to the “tightness” and “brief distribution issue”.

Femi Soneye, NNPC Ltd spokesman disclosed that the state-owned company did not have supply issues, saying its products remained readily available.

He added that the distribution issue in some areas had been resolved.

“We are pleased to confirm that there are no supply issues, and our products remain readily available.

“The recent tightness experienced in certain areas was due to a brief distribution issue in Lagos, which has since been resolved,” Soneye said.

Abubakar Maiganda, the national president, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) explained loading disruption at the NNPC Ltd depots across the country has been a major challenge in the past two weeks for his members.

“The queue situation we are witnessing now is pertaining to loading issues. Most of our (IPMAN) trucks are there in Lagos and we are not getting opportunity to load. So the problem has to do with supply and loading. We are yet to hear anything from the NNPCL on this even as IPMAN, we are not getting our allocation from NNPCL in spite of our pact with them. We cannot go to other private depots because their prices are too high and it doesn’t benefit us to buy from them because how much are we going to sell that to the public,” Maiganda said.