Petrol Queues Abate As More Stations Resume Operations

The queues for petrol in Abuja and neighbouring Nasarawa and Niger reduced on Thursday as more retail outlets dispensed the product to motorists.

Petrol queues had dragged on in Abuja and environs since last week, a development that resulted in over 100 per cent hike in transport fares.

Oil marketers had attributed the scarcity of petrol in the affected areas to the alleged moves by government to hike the price of the commodity.

They had also stated that the recent e-payment policy of the Pipelines Product Marketing Company, a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, was disrupting the smooth flow of products’ purchase.

These concerns, according to oil marketers, had caused the scarcity witnessed in Abuja and some northern states.

But on Thursday, our correspondent observed that the long queues had started disappearing in many locations after more retails outlets resumed operations.

Some of the outlets had been closed since last week, while others opened for a while and closed shop thereafter.

Filling station attendants and operators in the downstream sector had stated that the fear by dealers who closed their outlets was that the government could increase petrol price.

But this never happened, rather the NNPC declared recently that it would not and was not contemplating an increase in petrol price in the month of March.

“Filling station owners were being cautious but the good thing is that NNPC has cleared the air on the pricing matter,” the National Public Relations Officer, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Ukadike Chinedu, stated.

It was observed that more filling stations in Karu, Nasarawa State, as well as in Zuba, Niger State, opened on Thursday, while many others in Abuja also dispensed products.

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