By Michael Eboh
Abuja—Fuel scarcity, yesterday, returned to Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, with about 80 per cent of the petrol stations in the capital city, claiming they did not have products to sell.
This came two days after the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Mr. Maikanti Baru, declared that the country had seen the last of fuel scarcity, stating that it had put machineries in place to ensure adequate supply of petroleum products in 2018 and beyond.
In the Central Business District in Abuja, and outskirts of the city, majority of the petrol stations were shut while the few that were selling recorded long queues of motorists.
However, the NNPC, in a statement yesterday by its Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Mr. Ndu Ughamadu, insisted that it had robust stock of Premium Motor Spirit, PMS, also known as petrol, sufficient to serve the nation for more than 30 days.
Ughamadu charged motorists in Abuja, its environs and other parts of the country not to engage in panic buying of petroleum products.
He explained that this became necessary on the heels of queues noticeable in some fuel stations, especially in Abuja, while he advised motorists to report any marketer selling above N145 per litre or hoarding the products to the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, statutorily empowered to deal with such issues.
He said, “Law enforcement agencies would mete out appropriate sanctions to operators of fuel stations who engage in hoarding or sell products above the recommended price.”
Despite these assurances, long queues dotted the few petrol stations opened to motorists, while Conoil petrol station at Area 1, Garki, Sea Petroleum filling stations at Area 3, Garki, were not selling. Forte Oil, Conoil, Oando filling stations at Wuse were closed to motorists.
At the Conoil petrol stations opposite the NNPC Headquarters, the fuel queue stretched up to four streets, while at the NNPC mega stations in Wuse equally witnessed very long queues of motorists.
Along the Abuja-Kaduna Expressway, only the NNPC stations at Mpape were selling the commodity, while all others along the same road were closed.