Despite assurances by various government agencies and officials that the current fuel crisis will abate, the situation across the country portends a bleak Christmas, as the scarcity bites harder and thousands are forced to sleep in filling stations to purchase the product.
When the scarcity began, both the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Ibe Kachikwu, and the Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, Maikanti Baru, said normalcy was going to be restored in a matter of days.
When the crisis worsened, following the threat by the Independent Petroleum Products Marketers of Nigeria, IPMAN, to embark on a nationwide strike, Mr. Kachikwu, following the marching orders by the Executive Council of the Federation, FEC, said the problem was going to end in a few days.
Subsequent assurances from the NNPC was that enough had been done, by increasing the number of trucks of petroleum products to major cities to take care of the scarcity.
But, days after those assurances, the situation in Lagos, Abuja and most other major cities across the country remain far from normal, as fuel remains in short supply, with attendant high prices.
The resultant impact has been rising transportation fares by almost 100 per cent, as Nigerians prepare for Christmas.