Residents of the Bayelsa State capital, Yenagoa, and its environs have been lamenting the high cost of the pump price of petrol in the state.
Although some major marketers charge N250 for a litre of fuel, others charge N350 and N380 as customers arrive at the filling stations with various-sized jerrycans.
Only the filling station of the NNPC Limited along the Sani Abacha Expressway sold petrol at the official price of N179 per litre.
This had caused long queues of vehicles at the filling station in the past three months as some vehicle motorists slept there or left their houses as early as 4 am to join the queue.
Worried by the situation, some residents and motorists have called on the Federal Government to fix the local refineries to reduce the suffering of consumers.
According to some of the consumers, they were losing productive hours waiting endlessly at filling stations to buy fuel at the regulated price.
They lamented that their agony had been aggravated by poor power supply within the Yenagoa metropolis, a situation that has forced residents, operators of business outfits, and offices to depend entirely on their generating sets for their electricity supply.
A frustrated commercial tricycle operator who identified himself as Matthias Okon said he was fed up with the arbitrary cost of petrol in Yenagoa.
“Every day, every week it is the same problem of fuel scarcity and long queues in Yenagoa. It is painful and unbearable”, he said.
A bus driver, who gave his name as Mr. Yomi, said he had to sleep at the filling station. He urged the government to put in place measures to tackle the issue, including revamping the refineries.
Another driver with one of the transport companies, Mr Nonso Chikwendo wondered why the government could not fix the refineries as a solution to the fuel situation.
He said: “How can Nigeria be an oil-producing nation with refineries and we will be suffering for fuel? Let them work on the refineries so that there will be fuel”.
The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva had said that the Port Harcourt Refinery, which was being revamped, would commence operations in the first quarter of 2024.
Source: The PUNCH