Boko Haram terrorists have reportedly destroyed some power stations and transmission lines, cutting Maiduguri, the Borno State capital, from the national grid for two months.
It was gathered that Boko Haram laid land mines that injured officials of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) when they tried to repair the demage.
This led to heavy military escort as repairs progressed. Residents and business owners now have to rely on their power generating sets for electricity.
Fuel marketers in Maiduguri have be accused of hoarding petroleum products, triggering price inflation.
A black marketer, Mohammed Abdulrahman told Channels Television: “A litre was N200 when fuel was available, but when it became very scarce fuel was sold for N450 to N500.
“But to be honest when the product is scarce, that’s when we make more profit. But when the fuel is available, sometimes you’ll be here the whole day and maybe only five or six cars will stop to buy from you.”
A business owner, Abdulmumini Bello, on the other hand, said: “Every blessed day, you spend N5,000 on fuel and there is no power so everything is now expensive.
“The government should consider and help us out of this difficulty. We are facing the problem of power outage and petrol scarcity, and there is poverty.”
A motorist, Maikudi Kwajaffa, also accused filling stations of deceiving the public, He said: “If you go to the filling stations, you’ll see the display on their dashboard saying N162 but actually if you say you want to buy N2,000 fuel, they’ll just carry their calculator and begin to calculate.
“If you go to another place, they’ll say it’s N190 or N180. I don’t know if they are waiting for the government to increase the price, but hoarding the fuel makes it so scarce and you know in Maiduguri it’s about two months now we have not had electricity so most people want to take in jerrycans or gallons.”
Reacting, the DPR, Zonal Operations Controller, North East, Abubakar Ciroma said agency was battling marketers overpricing.
The DPR official however stated that that there were no fuel queues in Maiduguri.
He also blamed the long distance between Maiduguri and major petrol hubs such as Lagos and Port Harcourt for the shortfall in supply that has spooked the marketers.
He said: “The insecurity challenges along the road. You know we have had so many cases of blockage on the road and so on.
“Some of the vehicles break down because they are old and they are coming from Lagos with the bad roads here and there.”