As the scarcity of petrol bites harder across the country, the products are now available at the black market at the rate of N500 per litre in most parts of Akure, Ondo State.
Most of the fuel stations are under lock and key and few stations with the product have unending queues.
Motorists who decide to queue for fuel spend all day at stations to get the product.
The Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu, set up a task force last week to monitor the sale of petrol by marketers.
But once the task force started invading the fuel stations and forcing them to sell, the marketers locked up the stations claiming there is no fuel for sale.
The governor had also issued additional measures banning the sale of the product after 7 p.m.
Hakeem Kajola, a driver who spoke to PREMIUM TIMES in Akure on Wednesday, lamented the scarcity, saying that while the product is available in neighbouring states at between N220 and N250 per litre, the product is not available at all in Ondo State.
He blamed the situation on the state government for its high-handedness, saying its action had further worsened the situation.
This reporter met with a seller of the product in kegs who said he bought the product at the filling station for N300 per litre and would only sell at N500.
The seller, who refused to give his name, also said they usually buy the product at night, despite the order by the state government banning the night sale of petroleum products.
“We buy along the express at about 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.,” he said.
“I am looking for more money to buy more.”
Initially, the sellers were concealing the product, but as of Wednesday, many of the sellers were bold to display the kegs of the product by the roadside, especially along Oda Road.
“I have no choice but to buy black market because there is no fuel anywhere and I have to go out,” Olasunkanmi, a resident said
“I started buying N500 per litre last week but this week, some of the black marketers are selling for N400 per litre.
“We can’t blame them, we don’t have the product, if the product is readily available nobody will sell or buy black market.”
Mr Akeredolu, along with the Task Force, stormed Sunbeth Petrol Station, along Idanre Road in Oke-Aro, in the state capital on Monday evening to ensure compliance with the N165 approved pump price.
He did that after receiving information that the station had products and was about selling at N250 per litre.
The governor forced the sale of the product to residents at the control price of N165 per litre.
Meanwhile, the governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party(SDP) in Ekiti State, Segun Oni, has urged the state governor Kayode Fayemi to constitute a task force to enforce the sale of petrol at the control price in Ekiti.
Mr Oni, who sympathised with the people of Ekiti State on the lingering fuel scarcity that has lasted more than a month, said it was callous for marketers to be selling as much as N250 per litre, instead of N165 regulated price approved by the federal government.
“It was very sad that the government of the state have decided to look elsewhere rather than tackling the problems occasioned by the scarcity,” Mr Oni said.
“One would have expected the governor Fayemi to take the bull by its horns by putting an effective task force in place that would not be bribed by those who deliberately hoarded the commodity in order to make huge profit at the expense of the masses and arrest them.”
He advised the governor to borrow ideas from his Ondo State counterpart, who left the comfort of his office to the fuel stations to ease the problem by force.
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