Nigeria’s perennial fuel crisis has defied all solutions by successive governments. The problem is not a creation by witches from outer space, but an entirely Nigerian problem by Nigerians.
Business & Economy Editor, Bassey Udo of PremiumTimesNigeria, who has reported several cycles of fuel crises in more than two decades, x-rays reasons the crisis has persisted.
#1:. INADEQUATE SUPPLY
Fuel scarcity is usually a result of limited or inadequate stock of products not replenished on time. But, how do you replenish the stock when nobody knows exactly what the country’s demand is?
From the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, through the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, to the Department of Petroleum Resources, and the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency, no one can say categorically what the daily national fuel consumption figure is.
The statistics are as varied as the purpose for which each agency is issuing them.
When calculating subsidy claims for products, marketers, the NNPC and PPPRA put figure at between 45 and 60 million litres against conservative industry figures of between 30 and 35 million litres.
If the agencies that are supposed to handle fuel supply do not know what we need or consume daily, how can we build an adequate and sustainable stock? How are we sure we are not spending our scarce resources building a stock that are being diverted and smuggled outside the country to service consumers in neighbouring countries to the detriment of Nigerians?