Fuel pump price reaches N285 in FCT

Many petrol stations in the Federal Capital Territory’s metropolitan Abuja have adjusted prices at the pump to between 180 and 285 naira per litre.

Our correspondent observed that queues had returned to many gas stations, especially within the FCT central business district.

While queues were noticed at NNPC gas stations, other stations were closed.

The group managing director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited, Mele Kyari, had said the company could no longer sell at 170 naira per litre, due to rising landed prices.

On the outskirts of Karu, our correspondent observed that the area’s NNPC petrol station had adjusted its meter to sell at 179 naira per litre. The same was seen at the Shema gas station in Kugbo along the Abuja-Keffi highway.

In addition, the NNPC petrol station in Wuse Zone 6 and the NIPCO petrol station near the center of the capital sold the product at N180 per litre.

The biggest pump price increase was seen at Khalif Civic Oil and Investment Limited in the Kubwa axis of the FCT, where petrol was being sold at N285 per litre.

However, some motorists didn’t seem bothered by the price hike, which some said was no different from buying on the black market.

One of them, Ekpuma Ozonwa, said that even though the price was so high, he had no choice because the product was not readily available.

“To me, the difference is outrageous, but when the availability of (fuel at) NNPC is not there, what do you do? You use what you have on hand. Because I have to move, I need to have fuel in my car to connect to my businesses here and there, and even for my generator to serve me for the services that are crucial to me The responsibility lies with the government to ensure that fuel is available in all gas stations, because that’s the only way to curb this black market (sales) and hike gas stations,” Ozonwa added.

Defending the price hike, a petrol station manager, Saleh Alfa, said there was no current fixed price due to fuel landing prices, this meant that all FCT petrol stations currently selling at black market prices.

“If other stations are selling at N250, N180 or N285, that implies all of them are selling at black market rates if you want to put it that way. Because for the moment, there is no uniform price in the downstream oil sector. There is no fuel; the NNPC admitted that there was no fuel and independent traders were getting fuel from other sources. The price at which we get these products is not the government price or the NNPC price; it depends on where you get your products from.

“So that’s what’s responsible for price variation. That’s why we in the industry are asking the government to allow full deregulation. If there’s full deregulation, then that will be determined by market forces, and when there is competition, customers will have a choice of where to buy.