Dealers hoard fuel in Enugu

Tony Edike

19 December 2011, Sweetcrude, ENUGU— Residents of Enugu metropolis are experiencing tough times following acute scarcity of petroleum products.

A petrol dealer, who preferred anonymity, stated at the weekend that the major dealers resorted to hoarding products ahead of the planned removal of fuel subsidy by the Federal Government in January, next year.

Major marketers had suspended sales since last Wednesday, though many of the stations were said to have enough products.

The scarcity has forced the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol, to N75 per litre at filling stations owned by independent marketers.

Long queues were noticed at some filling stations that had products as buyers, preparing to travel for the yuletide, were struggling to fuel their cars.

Officials of Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in Enugu could not be reached to comment on the petroleum products scarcity, yesterday.

However, an official of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) warned that the situation might worsen if nothing was done to check the excesses of the major marketers in the state.

Only the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) mega station in Enugu has consistently sold petrol at the approved pump price. Therefore, a long queue of vehicles had been a constant feature at the mega station in the last one week.

Meanwhile, Enugu State Government has taken steps to cushion the effect of kerosene scarcity on the people by procuring the product to be sold at a subsidised rate of N50 per litre.

Distribution of the product in all the 17 local government areas was expected to commence last Friday, but reports said, yesterday, that the rural dwellers were yet to access kerosene owing to late arrival of the suppliers.

The measure was part of the government’s Christmas package for the people.

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