Price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), or petrol soared by about 50 per cent at retail outlets following the hike in price of the product at the depots, it was learnt.
A daily industry price survey conducted by marketers at depots in Apapa, Lagos, revealed that yesterday’s average price per litre of PMS was N112 as against the normal price of N77.66 per litre. The MRS depot sold at N110 per litre, Honeywell sold at N111, while Folawiyo and Capital Oil and Gas sold at N115 per litre respectively, reflecting an increase of about 50 per cent.
Fuel tanker drivers were seen milling around the gates of the depots looking for people that would facilitate easy access to Depot managers to enable them buy the product, even at such high prices because some of them have spent weeks waiting for their trucks to be loaded with product.
One of the marketers, who asked not to be identified, told The Nation that currently, none of them (marketers) has fuel because, as he put it, “there is no money to import,” saying that because demand far outstrips supply now, there are grave sharp practices at the depots. He noted that the depots of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) still sell at the regulated price of N77.66 per litre, but immediately the loaded truck comes out of the gate, the product is sold to the waiting tanker drivers and marketers who are willing to pay higher margins.
The marketer was of the view that price of petrol may rise to as high as N200 per litre at filling stations in Lagos before the week runs out.
The Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division of NNPC, Ohi Alegbe, said the marketers are being economical with the truth because of the subsidy money owed them. There is enough to go round if the marketers sincerely distribute it, adding that the Corporation recently decided to be publishing its daily fuel supply from the depots, indicating the quantities given to marketers and the trucks that took the products, to confirm transparency and commitment of the government to providing fuel for the populace, alleging that some marketers want to discredit the government by diverting and hoarding the fuel given to them.