The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) on Friday said it had injected additional 688 million litres of petrol into the market to address the noticeable fuel queues in some cities across the country.
This is contained in a statement by Mr Ohi Alegbe, Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of the corporation, in Abuja.
Alegbe, however, explained that what appeared to be scarcity of petrol was artificially.
He said the corporation had already increased the volume of petroleum products being supplied to marketers substantially.
“The NNPC is injecting an additional 600,103.05 metric tonnes of premium motor spirit, the equivalent of 688 million litres of petrol into the market within the next 48 hours.
“This is to arrest any short fall that may have been triggered by the unnecessary fears of an imminent scarcity of products,” he said.
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He, therefore, called on members of the public not to engage in panic buying and hoarding of petroleum products, saying that NNPC was working with all downstream stakeholders to eliminate the artificially-induced queues in some fuel stations.
Meanwhile, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the noticeable scarcity was caused by a ‘’slight drop in the lifting of fuel from the depot earlier in the week’’.
Spokesman of Abuja Zonal office of DPR, Mr Seidu Mohammed, however, said the situation had been checked with the injection of more petrol into the market.
Mohammed said that the scarcity was artificial and the situation would be normalised before the weekend because marketers had started lifting more product.
Mr Farouk Ahmed, Executive Secretary of Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), had in a statement earlier, warned marketers against hoarding or adjusting their pump price above official price of N87 per litre of petrol.
He said PPPRA, in collaboration with the DPR, would ensure that marketers did not cheat on consumers.
“In other words, any violation of the warning will attract appropriate sanctions,” he said.
Farouk also advised Nigerians against any form of panic-buying, stressing that there were enough products in all depots across the country.
He assured Nigerians that the PPPRA, in exercise of its mandate, was fully committed to ensuring adequate supply and distribution of petroleum products around the country.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that queues were noticeable in Abuja metropolis, especially as filling stations in satellite towns in the Federal Capital Territory refused to sell the product.
At the Total and Conoil petrol stations opposite NNPC headquarters, the long queues of vehicles led to heavy traffic problem.
Other filling stations in the city, including NNPC Mega and Conoil, on Olusegun Obasanjo Way were also besieged by motorists in search of petrol. (