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Transporters hike fare as fuel scarcity persists in Abuja

04 March 2015, 20:22Aregbeshola Isaac

Abuja - Transport fares in Abuja on Tuesday increased by between 50 and 100 per cent as fuel scarcity persists.

Many commuters have been left stranded at different bus stops due to lack of vehicles.

Some commuters within Abuja metropolis also resorted to trekking to their destination after waiting endlessly without getting vehicles.

Motorists, who managed to get the product after several hours of queuing at fuel stations, transferred the burden on passengers by charging almost double the normal fare.

Remi Ojo, said he had to trek to catch with his appointment after waiting for hours.

A civil servant, Isaac Joshua, who lives in Lugbe, reported that he got to his office around 11 a.m. because he could not get vehicle on time.

"The bus stop looked like market, there were a lot of passengers struggling to catch up with the available vehicles.

"I kept running as if I was competing in marathon race without any result, it was so frustrating, if you are not strong you could just be pushed down and be wounded," Joshua said.

Kabir Mohammed, a motorist, said he bought four litres for N1,500 from black marketer in Bwari to take his children to school and go to office.

Yusuf Yahaya, a civil servant, said he suffered a lot of hardship at the bus stop while coming to work.

Yahaya said that he spent several hours before getting a vehicle and the driver charged him N150 for a distance that previously went for N100.

"Can you imagine how long I waited at the bus top this morning without getting any vehicle, but because I have to get to work at all cost, I paid the extra unbudgeted fare.

"The situation is becoming worrisome and I think the authorities need to rise to the challenge before it is hijacked by the perceived enemies of the nation," Yahaya said.

Also read: NNPC promises to end fuel scarcity before weekend

Patience Johnson said the fare from Nyanya to Maraba to the city centre which used to cost between N100 and N150 had increased to between N200 and N300 depending on the destination.

"If you get to the bus stops you will see a confused situation as commuters struggle to catch the few available vehicles," Johnson said.

Johnson said her worry was how to get back home in the evening before she could think of coming to work the next day.

Oladele Henry, a commercial driver, said he had to charge extra fare because he spent several hours at filling stations before getting fuel.

He said that the situation was not improving as the queue kept increasing at filling stations in the city.

He said he had to buy 10 litres for N2000 from black market when he could no longer endure the hardship at the filling station.

The Group Managing Director of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Joseph Dawha, said the scarcity was temporary and it would fade out within the next two days.

Dawha, said that the corporation had embarked on the plans to clear the queue within shortest period of time.

He said the corporation had already increased substantially the volume of petroleum products distributed to marketers.

The NNPC managing director said the corporation had on Friday injected additional 688 million litres of premium motor spirit into the market to arrest any short fall that might have triggered the situation.

He, therefore, called on members of the public not to engage in panic buying and hoarding of petroleum products.



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