Long queues were witnessed at various filling stations as fuel scarcity hits Jos-Bukuru metropolis.
This came a few days after the Plateau State Government accused some petrol stations of hoarding petroleum products with the view to creating artificial scarcity.
However, most motorists in Jos have expressed concern about the situation.
Some of the motorists, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday in Jos, alleged that some petrol marketers increased the price of petrol.
Correspondent of NAN who visited some of the petrol stations reports that majority of them were not dispensing the product to consumers, while long queues of vehicles were seen in the few stations that were selling.
NAN also reported that at a few filling stations dispensing, the product is being sold for between N170 and N200 per litre.
Operators of the black market have taken advantage of the scarcity to increase the price of the product at their ends from N1, 000 to N1, 300 per four-litre gallon
However, the product is sold at the approved price of N162 at the NNPC mega station located around the Dogon Karfe area of Jos, but not without a long queue.
Mr Pam Chomo, a commercial driver, decried that the scarcity of the essential commodity, adding that it was biting hard on motorists and have forced commercial drivers to increase transport fares.
Chomo, said that the rationale for the scarcity could not be ascertained, but alleged that the trend could be associated with government planned increase of the price of petrol.
“As we speak to you, most filling stations, except the NNPC mega station, sells the petrol below N170.
“And the unfortunate thing is that in the stations that are selling, motorists spend hours on the queue just get the fuel.
“This has forced commercial drivers to increase transport fares to enable make gains and also cover up for the hours they spend on queues,’’ he said.
Mr Peter Okolo, a businessman said that the scarcity would not only affect the individual’s income but the general revenue of the government, as people spent productive time on queues in search of fuel
“We all know time is money, and as I am talking to you, I have spent over four hours on queue without moving an inch.
“I have spent four good hours out of my productive time in search of one commodity, yet I still haven’t got it; I am still here.
“Maybe I will still to spend more hours to have it if at all I will get it at the end.
“So, if businessmen, civil servants, artisans, farmers and host of others will spend hours on queue just to get one commodity, then it is unfortunate for our growing economy,” he lamented.
Mr Joseph Dung, a farmer, said: “Government must as matter of urgency address this because it has negatively affected other spheres of human endeavours”.
But Mr John Jeff, a civil servant, described the scarcity as “artificial” and blamed the unfortunate trend on the independent marketers who are bent on making profits at all costs.
Jeff alleged that the marketers were hoarding old stocks in anticipation of the increase in the price of the essential commodity in the coming months.
“For me, the current scarcity of fuel is just an artificial arrangement created by independent marketers.
“Because government is proposing total removal of subsidy, which will in turn hike the price of petrol, marketers are currently hoarding the product to make gains.
“This is sheer wickedness by Nigerians to their fellow citizens,’’ he said