Clement Isong, the Executive Secretary, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN), has assured Nigerians that there is no risk of possible fuel scarcity.
On Friday, many petrol retail outlets in Lagos and Abuja closed stations, creating long queues in a few filling stations that opened.
However, oil marketers assured Nigerians that there would be no sustained scarcity. They advised fuel consumers not to engage in panic-buying.
The problem, according to the marketers, has been addressed and depots are loading 24 hours, and whatever supply gap there is would be closed soon.
Isong said there was a slight technical hiccup which the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) and the marketers had already resolved, adding that there would be normal supply, and any envisaged scarcity would be over this weekend.
He said: “All the tanks have product. There is no supply shortage. What caused the queue is a minor operational hiccup. Whenever there is such technical issue and it takes up to 12 hours to resolve, it upsets supply and distribution chains, and that is what happened in this scenario, because it created backlogs of loadings that could have been done earlier.
“However, the problem has been resolved. One of the vessels berthed at the port loaded into our tanks yesterday (Thursday); another one will discharge today (Friday) and the third vessel will discharge tomorrow (Saturday).
“I advise the public not to embark on panic-buying as there is enough fuel. The gap in supply created by the technical problem will be closed within the weekend as our members are loading 24 hours through the weekend.
However, an official of one of the depots owned by the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), who did not want his identity disclosed, told The Nation newspaper that it was a slight scarcity.
He said: "If 10 depots are supposed to get supply from NNPC and only five depots were able to get at the end of the day, certainly, there must be a gap, and that is the reason you see queues at the filling stations.
“For instance, there are marketers who have paid for fuel in our depot in the past two to three weeks, and they are yet to be loaded because of inadequate fuel. But I believe that supply shortfall will be addressed soon.
“It is not something so serious. I assume it is a costly oversight on the part of the NNPC.”
Companies that make up MOMAN include Total Nigeria Plc, Conoil Plc, Oando Plc, 11Plc (formerly Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc), MRS Oil Nigeria Plc and Forte Oil Plc.