By Nahum Sule (Taraba State Correspondent, in Jalingo)
For more than a week now, Taraba has witnessed a long queue of cars waiting to get PMS in their tanks due to the scarcity of the commodity even though the NNPC is insisting that it has enough supply for the end of the year demand.
The long queue at filling stations is associated with the ‘Ember’ months which has now resurfaced as vehicle owners especially those whose cars use the product were forced to spend hours to get the product at the few major marketers who are dispensing at the pump price of N165 per litre.
Only a few major marketers and a number of independent marketers opened their filling stations to dispense the product, a situation that has sent fears of an imminent scarcity in the minds of people considering the present high cost of living in the country.
At the NNPC mega station along Mile six road in Jalingo, motorists and motorcycle riders were seen on queue waiting for their turns to get the quantity of the PMS they needed for few days to come not knowing how long the scarcity was going to take.
Rimandeyati Solomon who was on the queue wondered the reason behind fuel scarcity at the end of every year, saying it could be a deliberate move to make the celebration of the yuletide period for Christians and other people who have something to do during the period uneasy.
Also Hajiya Aisha Raiyanu said that she had spent close to one hour in the queue before she got the tank of her Toyota Camry car filled, saying that the yearly scarcity of PMS should be checked by concerned authorities in order to reduce the stress Nigerians are going through at present.
When contacted, the Manager of the station said that the station has enough PMS to sell to the customers, adding that he was expecting more supply from the depot. When asked what the cause of the scarcity was, he said that she is not aware of any scarcity but just got to the station to notice that queue was building up in the station.
When our correspondent visited the Taraba state office of DPR, the coordinator was said to have gone round to monitor the situation to ensure that it did not get out of control but an officer who did not want his name in print reassured us that there is no cause for alarm as NNPC has enough PMS to go through the year.
Meanwhile, black markets have resurfaced across the metropolis as urchins are seen displaying the products in jerrycans. They are selling in 4 litre gallons between N1000 to N1200 per gallon to desperate people who could not wait on the queue for a long time. NNL.