By Taye Obateru & Adedoyin Ojosipe
Jos â€” Residents of Plateau State are resorting to the use of charcoal, saw dust and firewood following the rise in the price of kerosene.
The price of kerosene has been fluctuating between N800 and N650 per gallon in the past weeks forcing many to seek cheaper ways of cooking. Apart from using kerosene to prepare their meals, most residents also use it to boil water for bathing because of the chilly weather of the state.
Managers of the various service stations spoken to blamed the situation on their having to get kerosene from alternative sources at exorbitant rates per litre, adding that they had not received any allocation from the Jos NNPC depot for several months now.
Residents who spoke to Vanguard said they took to the cheaper alternatives because they could not afford the rising cost of kerosene as a result of the biting economic situation in the country. Mrs. Ajagbe, a resident,Â described the cost as prohibitive and that she had no choice than turn to cheaper alternatives.
For Mr. Emmanuel Oluchukwu, who was seen at the charcoal market along Tafawa Balewa Street, he was barely managing to cope with the former price of between N380 to N420 per gallon of kerosene and could, therefore, not afford the new price.
Ironically, the roadside sellers of the commodity absolved themselves of blame, expressing fears that they could end up losing if the price suddenly drops.
According to one of them, Mrs. Adeniji, their profit margin had not increased drastically. She explained that they were also purchasing at the rate of N175 per litre, which gave them little or no profit margin at the current rate.