Subsidy removal: Residents groan as fuel price soars, long queues persist in C’River

Fuel petrol subsidy

Residents have continued to groan in Cross Rivers State as the Price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) has moved from N250 to N600 for Independent Marketers, and N500 to N1,000 for black marketers.

Our reporter who went round Calabar metropolis on Wednesday observed that many fuel stations are shut down in Calabar while the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) still sell at N194 per litre, even though it stops selling at intervals.

Security agents were seen controlling an overwhelming crowd at some NNPC stations, even though it did not reduce the crowds. Residents, commercial drivers and business owners were seen in long queues while waiting for their returns to purchase the product.

More difficult was the fact that many of the fuel stations in the City aren’t dispensing the product for reasons best known to them. Few of the residents who spoke to our reporter expressed uncertainty about the development.

According to A taxi driver Mr Ekpenyong: “I bought 10 litres last night, as I am driving now, I am afraid because once this one is exhausted, I wonder how I will manage to get another one.”

The Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) has described as “a state of confusion”, the looming fuel crisis across the country, blaming it on President Bola Tinubu’s announcement on Subsidy removal on Monday.

IPMAN Chairman in Cross River, Prince Robert Asua Obi, in an exclusive Interview with our correspondent in Calabar, said the announcement of Mr President, on the removal of the fuel subsidy during his inaugural speech yesterday in Abuja, has plunged the nation into a state of confusion and panic since there is no clear understanding of the policy direction for the petroleum market online with the president’s announcement of subsidy removal.

“As it is now, you know yesterday, the President (Bola Tinubu) just announced the removal of Fuel Subsidy. And that announcement is what has thrown the country into this confusion that we are seeing.

“It is the announcement that has thrown the country into this panic situation that we are in today because we don’t really know the direction to follow now,” the IPMAN Chairman said.

However, when asked what residents should expect in the coming days, the IPMAN Chairman explained that the situation might linger till about a week, in order to observe the policy direction from the presidency on the matter.

He said: “NNPC limited, in their facility, they don’t even have the product, the Private Tank Farms that are supposed to be selling to marketers aren’t selling, because they themselves do not know the actual Price to give out the product, so that is the situation we find ourselves in now.

“So until between now and a week time, we would be able to get a definite answer to give to the public, because even as Chairman, I don’t know what really to say; because the President just announced, so after today we would see the Policy direction on how the thing would be.”