A three day deadline which was given by Major Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), to stop lifting petroleum products due to debts owed them by the Federal Government, has expired. This has cause fuel scarcity in some parts of the country. The crisis worsened as motorists spent an average of 12 hours at petrol stations to purchase the commodity. Also, majority of the station no longer sell at the government stipulated price, but at an altered price of ₦100 or ₦130 per litre.
In Abuja, large crowd of pedestrians were seen at almost all the bus stops, as one of the cab drivers told Vanguard that commercial drivers are left with no other option than to hike their fares, as most of them had to purchase fuel from the black market at a minimum of N200 per litre.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) had blamed the fuel scarcity currently witnessed in parts of the country on the strike action embarked upon by the members of National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO) and the Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD) over their disagreements with major oil marketers.
Mr. Ohi Alegbe, Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division (NNPC), said NARTO and PTD members claimed they are being owed a huge amount of money by major oil marketers. Due to this, the truck drivers have refused to lift petroleum products from the coastal depots.
“We are, however, working towards a speedy resolution of the issues to ensure a hitch-free distribution of products across the country. We have sufficient stock of petrol at our coastal depots in Port Harcourt, Warri, and Calabar”.
The NNPC also appealed to NARTO and PTD to call off the strike in the interest of the country and not unleash unnecessary hardship on Nigerians. NNPC, also assured Nigerians that it had enough stock of petrol to service the country for 27 days at a national consumption rate of 40 million litres per day