Our fuel scarcity ordeal hell – Abuja residents
For over a month, Nigeria has been beset by fuel scarcity, causing endless queues at filling stations across the country and inflicting untold hardship on citizens. While the prolonged scarcity is blamed on government’s inadequacies and flip-flop petroleum policies, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, stunned everyone that the queues will not disappear until May, since he is not a magician. Our correspondent, Chuks NZEH, spoke with some Abuja residents who narrated their ordeals under weeks of fuel scarcity. Excerpts:
SHABA ALIKALI SAKPEFU
As I speak to you now, I have been doing my business with black market. I have been in the queue at NNPC filling station at Zone 1. If you go there and see how long the queue is under this hot sun, you would pity Nigerians.
I was given this tag from the filling station my number is 034 as you can see. It has not been easy at all for us to get fuel.
These black marketers are making so much money from us because you will buy 10 litres that ordinarily sell for N865 at N2, 500. We do not have any option because one must work.
We are urging government to solve this problem as soon as possible.
I am a taxi driver. We heard government said the queues will disappear in 14 days. But to my greatest surprise the queues are still here even till tomorrow.
Our thinking is that people might have joined the queues to get fuel and travel for the weekend. Also, not all filling stations are selling the product.
Government should make the product available to the filling stations so that we can buy fuel without wasting too much time.
Some people queue from morning till night and not get fuel. We are hopeful that it will soon be over.
I fuelled my car at Forte Oil filling station in Maitama, near Catholic Church after joining the queue from 11am last night to 2:30am. I couldn’t sleep throughout the night.
Government should send more tankers to Abuja and make sure that they are selling because some of them are hoarding the fuel.
I got into a filling station along airport road and they stopped selling 30 minutes after. We know that they had the product but did not want to sell. They are hoarding it.
I spent 11 hours today before I could buy fuel, at AYM Sharafa filling station this morning. I had to spend all the money I had on me to full my tank. Now I have to go and work so I can get money to give to my family for the weekend.
I think government should make sure that there is always product supplied to all the filling stations in Abuja. Even if they want to increase the price to like N100 per litre, most Nigerians will be willing to pay. But the product should be available at all times. Nobody likes to leave his or her family and sleep in the filling station because he wants to buy fuel.
We are not getting fuel to do our businesses. Some filling stations have stopped selling fuel for like 3 months. This is not good because there will be too much pressure on the few filling stations that are selling.
People are queuing for two days to get fuel. Sometimes you will stay that long on the queue and not get fuel.
We are asking government to have mercy on us and make sure that the product is properly distributed and monitored so that those who are hoarding it would be arrested.
We want to drive into a filling station and buy fuel without wasting too much time. Even if they want to increase the price, it is okay. We would adjust.
I bought the fuel at Total filling station in zone 3. I got there by 7pm yesterday and left 3pm this afternoon. My family did not see me at all throughout the night because I need to buy fuel and work.
I have been on the queue in MRS filling station at Airport road since 7pm yesterday. Now they have stopped selling because the product has finished.
Although they said they are expecting supply, I do not know when it would come and what to do now. I am stranded because I have little money on me and my fuel tank is almost at zero level.
I wonder why these black marketers have fuel but a whole filling station does not have fuel. Government should help us to come out of this problem because they promised us change.
This one is bad change oh! We need to do our businesses. I have not heard what government is doing. It is getting worst by the day.