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Fuel scarcity looms in Lagos, other states

By on April 12, 2013

A major fuel shortage is imminent in the country as a result of the inability of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, to pump the product to five depots.

This was attributed to the breakdown of system 2B pipeline dedicated to pumping imported fuel from Atlas Cove to the depots where major and independent marketers lift fuel to their outlets.

The spokesperson of the NNPC, Tumini Green, did not take telephone calls yesterday but sources in the corporation confirmed that it encountered distribution challenges which affected supply to the depots. He said: “We have experienced some issues that scuttled pumping to the depots.

This explains why it was not possible to supply fuel for many days.” Consequently, it has not been possible for marketers to lift the product from the various depots in the South- West to other parts of the country through tankers.

This compelled both major and independent marketers of petroleum products to depend on their existing stocks to meet motorists and other consumers’ demand.

An independent marketer who preferred not to be named said: “We have not been able to lift from the depots because there was no product.

“Over 15,000 trucks have paid to load fuel in Ejigbo, Mosinmi, Ore, Ibadan and Ilorin since last week, but are yet to receive them.

Many of us borrowed the money from banks with which we use to load our trucks.” However, a government source said: “The problem has been tackled and fuel supply has been restored to all the depots in the South- West.

There is no threat to supply anymore.” The Executive Secretary of Major Marketers Association of Nigeria, MOMAN, Mr. Timothy Olawore, said in a telephone interview that: “We have been informed that loading has restarted at the depots.”

However, stakeholders said a major fuel shortage might occur if the country failed to start second quarter fuel importation soon.

They said the situation could be worsened as the government had not yet released the list of fuel importers for the second quarter.