Fuel Crisis Hits Akure: Motorists Grapple with Soaring Prices and Scarce Supply

Akure, the capital of Ondo State, Nigeria, is currently experiencing a significant fuel crisis. Motorists are facing high prices and long queues at petrol stations. The situation has escalated to the point where fuel is being sold at prices ranging from N800 to N1,000 per litre, which is a substantial increase from the official price. 

The crisis began unfolding on Monday morning when many fuel stations displayed “closed” signs due to a lack of petrol. This has resulted in long queues at the few operational stations, causing traffic congestion and leaving motorists and commuters stranded.

The scarcity has been attributed to limited or no supply of fuel from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL), leading to a breakdown in the fuel distribution chain. Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) in Ondo State has indicated that members have to buy fuel from third parties at higher costs, making it unprofitable to sell at the official pump price.

Shina Amoo, the chairman of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) in Ondo State, highlighted the root cause of the scarcity: “The limited or no supply of fuel from the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) has severely restricted our ability to operate. We’re buying fuel from third parties at higher costs, which makes it unprofitable to sell at the official pump price.

The fuel crisis has far-reaching implications for daily life, affecting various aspects of the community.  With fuel scarcity, public transportation becomes less available and more expensive, causing difficulties for commuters and potentially leading to increased use of personal vehicles, which further exacerbates the fuel shortage.

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A Filling Station Manager expressed concern about the situation: “We’re in a tough spot. Our costs have skyrocketed, and we’re forced to pass this on to the customers, which is not good for business. We’re just hoping for a quick resolution.”

 Businesses that rely on fuel for their operations may face disruptions, which can lead to reduced productivity and financial losses and students may find it challenging to commute to educational institutions, affecting attendance and academic performance. The increased cost of transportation can also strain the budgets of students and their families.

Benita Oruma, a local business owner, shared her frustration: “This crisis is affecting not just the transport sector but all of us. The cost of goods has gone up, and customers are feeling the pinch. It’s a domino effect that’s hitting us hard.”

The overall well-being of residents may decline as the cost of basic necessities increases, and the ability to travel for work or family obligations is restricted.

The situation calls for prompt intervention by authorities to restore normalcy and prevent further strain on the daily lives of the people in Akure.

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