Fuel Scarcity: Exploitation Reigns Supreme At Lagos Filling Stations
IN spite of the reported arrival of eight vessels loaded with various types of petroleum products at Lagos ports last Sunday, Lagosians still groan under the agony of scarcity of Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS).
The two-week-old scarcity has continued to linger and the end result is the exploitation by many independent marketers and even NNPC stations. Many Nigerians, especially Lagosians now bear the brunt of the scarcity as they buy PMS at an exorbitant price different from the official pump price of N87.
At many filling stations in Ikotun, Igando, Idimu, Egbeda, Akowonjo, Dopemu, Agege Motor road, Ikeja along, and Airport road in Lagos State, many private car owners and commercial buses were seen queuing up to buy even when the price was almost double of the official pump price. The queue-up in many filling stations has however been causing serious gridlocks in many areas.
For instance, at Cement, the queues often extended into the middle of Agege motor road, causing serious traffic for road users. Further investigation done by The Guardian also revealed that both independent marketers and black marketers are taking advantage of this scarcity. They all sell at an amount almost double the official N87.
At some filling stations in Igando, Ijegun and Ikotun, PMS is being sold at N100, N120, N150 per litre. At various filling stations, even at the so-called NNPC stations, fuel was being sold majorly to people with kegs with a view to maximizing profits.
The NNPC stations in Ikotun, Diamond Estate areas and Isheri-Igando road are culpable in this act. When asked why independent marketers had to sell at exorbitant price, excuses given by many respondents were that they also bought the PMS at an expensive rate.
At one of the NNPC stations in Alimosho, the manager, names withheld, explained that they don’t lift fuel at the official amount and this has forced him to also find a way of making up for the loss. Incidentally, black marketers buy PMS directly from the NNPC and sell at almost adjacent the filling station.
The Guardian also found out that black marketers, whom sell PMS to people as if they are selling kerosene, have bought different measures. At Ejigbo, many marketers were spotted at different locations with different measures selling to commuters.
Independent marketers along Ikotun, Ijegun, Isheri and even NNPC area of Ejigbo area of Lagos sell petrol at N100 and N120 for the past two weeks. In fact, most NNPC stations prefer to sell to black marketers who stay few kilometers to them and sell at expensive rates.