A combined team of security agencies have arrested seven hawkers of petrol in Ilorin as the scarcity of the product continues to bite harder in the Kwara capital.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the team which comprised personnel drawn from the Nigeria Police and the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, were sighted raiding black market spots at Post Office, Maraba and Challenge among other areas in the metropolis.
Kunle Bilesanmi, the Public Relations Officer of NSCDC in Kwara, confirmed the arrests to NAN in Ilorin on Wednesday.
He said the team also seized more than 3,000 litres of petrol from the hawkers.
Two filling stations, he added, were forced to sell at government approved price of N145 per litre in Amoyo on the outskirts of Ilorin.
“We started the raid since December, 2017, and we will not stop until sanity is restored to the system.
“Just this morning, we forced two filling stations to sell at control price in Amoyo,’’ he said.
A survey conducted by NAN revealed that a litre of petrol now sells for between N300 and N400 in the numerous black market spots in Ilorin.
NAN also reports that many commuters now resort to trekking long distances because of the high transport fares due to the acute shortage of petrol.
Sulaiman Asekunlowo, a resident, lamented that the fuel scarcity had inflicted untold hardship on him.
Mr. Asekunlowo noted that a drop by commercial vehicles and motorcycles had increased to between N100 and N200 as against N50 and N70 respectively charged before the fuel crisis.
He urged the relevant agencies to expedite action in tackling the crisis.
A trader, Comfort Ayinde, said the protracted fuel scarcity was taking a toll on the economy and the lives of the people.
Mr. Ayinde noted that only few vehicles were on the road, leaving many passengers stranded.
“I waited for more than an hour to board a cab from Maraba to Geri-Alimi; this would have taken less than five minutes under a normal situation,’’ she said.