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Sunday, February 25, 2024

Traffic chaos and fuel queues grip Lagos, Abuja amid fears of petrol scarcity

Motorists Endure Long Queues at Filling Stations, Hike Fares as Uncertainty Surrounds Fuel Availability

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Monday saw heavy traffic gridlock engulf parts of Lagos, with motorists forming extensive queues outside filling stations amid concerns over a potential scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol.

Significant congestion was reported along the Ikorodu Road axis, where motorists endured unusually heavy gridlock due to lengthy queues at filling stations. The scene was mirrored at the Total Filling station along Mobolaji Bank Anthony Way, causing substantial traffic buildup around the Ikeja axis.

Further observations revealed that many filling stations along the Ikeja axis, stretching through Obafemi Awolowo Road, remained closed, exacerbating the situation for motorists.

The same was seen in parts of Abuja, including Utako, Mpape, and the Kubwa expressway.

Meanwhile, in Lagos, some commuters reported instances of fare hikes as commercial transport operators grappled with prolonged wait times to refuel their vehicles. A transport operator on the Unilag-Jibowu axis in Yaba lamented the delays and justified fare increases, urging passengers to understand the challenges faced.

Furthermore, all filling stations along Ogunnusi Road inbound Berger were observed to have halted petrol sales, adding to the growing concern among residents.

The resurgence of fuel queues in Lagos has left many puzzled, especially considering the absence of clear explanations for the sudden scarcity. Reports indicate that major filling stations, known for offering gasoline at competitive rates, were among those experiencing long queues.

Notably, several filling stations owned by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway also ceased dispensing fuel, compounding the issue.

Hammed Fashola, National Vice Chairman of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, acknowledged the queues but attributed them to panic buying rather than an actual scarcity. He emphasized the need to investigate the root cause of the situation, suggesting that customer apprehension might be driving the increased demand for gasoline.

While uncertainty looms over the fuel supply situation in Lagos, residents brace for potential disruptions and await clarity on the underlying issues driving the resurgence of fuel queues across the city.

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