Fears that petrol prices may soon be reviewed upward have made motorists in Lagos engage in panic buying of the product.
There have been speculations that oil marketers were planning to hike petrol prices from the current N617 to N720 per litre.
The continued depreciation of the naira and rising crude oil price in the international market were said would trigger the price review.
According to reports, oil marketers on Sunday indicated that the cost of Premium Motor Spirit, popularly called petrol, would rise to between N680/litre and N720/litre in the coming weeks should the naira weaken to 950/dollar from 910/dollar at the parallel market.
They also hinted that dealers who wanted to import PMS were being forced to put the plans on hold due to the scarcity of dollars to import the commodity.
The warning came barely one week after the local currency crossed the 900/dollar ceiling, exchanging at over 945/dollar at the parallel market on Friday.
However, Jozebrain Media observed queues in fuel stations in Lagos on Monday evening and Tuesday, as motorists rushed to buy petrol before the speculated price hike.
After the reports on Monday, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited on its official X (formerly Twitter) handle around 11:48pm said it had no intention to increase the pump price of petrol.
According to reports, petrol, on Monday, sold for N650 per litre in Borno, Oyo and Delta States against NNPCL’s adjusted price of N617.
Jozebrain Media also gathered that the landing cost of petrol had risen month-on-month by 37.4 per cent to N632.17 per litre in July 2023, from N460 per litre in June 2023.
In Maiduguri, Borno State capital, petrol was sold between N625 and N655 at some private stations; and N635 at the NNPC Mega station on Tuesday.
In Ibadan, Oyo State, many filling stations adjusted the petrol price from N580 to N690.
In Lagos, while many filling stations shut their gates against motorists, some were seen to have also adjusted prices from around N580/N600 litre, to around N610/litre.
Some marketers were alleged to be hoarding products.
The former Chairman of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria and Chief Executive Office of 11 Plc, Tunji Oyebanji, told Jozebrain Media that it was wrong to speculate prices since petrol had been deregulated.
He described the habitual projection of petrol pump prices by a sect of downstream players as “illegal”.
He advised the Federal Government to invest in fixing the refineries.