Abeokuta, Ogun State’s bustling capital, was thrown into chaos on Tuesday as commercial and vehicular activities ground to a halt due to an abrupt surge in the pump price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol. The unexpected price hike saw the cost per litre skyrocket from N500 to a staggering range between N580 and N617.
Vanguard correspondent’s investigation revealed a stark disparity in pricing between independent marketers, who sold a litre of fuel for N700, and major marketers dispensing it at N580 per litre. This disparity further fueled the frustrations of the public, already grappling with the substantial increase in fuel costs.
The impact of the sudden fuel price escalation reverberated across various sectors. The inter-state transport fare experienced an astronomical rise, leaving travelers burdened with additional expenses. Similarly, intra-state transporters took advantage of the situation, raising their fares to cope with the elevated fuel costs.
At one of the filling stations located in Ake, opposite the local government secretariat, motorists were left waiting in long queues while lamenting the scarcity of the product despite its exorbitant price. Frustrated taxi driver, Adetunji Olamide, voiced his dissatisfaction, criticizing the government’s timing of the increase and calling for swift action to address the issue, particularly considering its potential adverse impact on the masses. He expressed doubts about the effectiveness of any government palliative measures.
The repercussions of the fuel price hike were also evident on the city’s streets, which saw a sharp decline in vehicular movement. The scarcity of vehicles led to a further surge in taxi fares, with rates skyrocketing from N100 to N200 and even N240 per drop, adding to the financial strain on citizens.
The situation sparked widespread public outrage, with people openly condemning the government for the fuel price hike. The abrupt increase left citizens feeling helpless and burdened, as they struggled to cope with the economic implications of the escalating fuel costs.