Domestic airlines and their passengers will soon heave a sigh of relief over the scarcity of aviation fuel, as eight million litres of the product have been discharged in Lagos.
The Executive Secretary, Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, Mr. Obafemi Olawore, said in a telephone interview with our correspondent on Monday that a marketer had already taken delivery of the product, also known as Jet-A1 fuel.
“One marketer has the product now; we are expecting more. A ship has completed a discharge. We are expecting a second ship this week. Already, we have a minimum of eight million litres of Jet-A1 fuel in the market now,” Olawore said.
In the past few weeks, air passengers have been forced to cope with flight cancellations and delays as the airlines struggle to continue operations in view of the scarcity of the product.
Domestic airlines in the country had last week stated that they might be forced to scale down their operations if the scarcity of aviation fuel persisted. At the time, only two marketers were said to be supplying all the domestic airlines in the country.
Industry stakeholders have variously blamed the situation on the inability of oil marketers to source foreign exchange with which to import the product. As a result, its price has been raised, with the product presently being sold for between N160 and N200 per litre.
In a similar development, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority on Monday called on all passengers experiencing flight delays and cancellations arising from the scarcity of aviation fuel to exercise restraint.
The General Manager, Public Relations, NCAA, Sam Adurogboye, said in a statement that the call was necessary due to reports of passengers’ rage and violence from some of the nation’s airports in the last few days.
He said, “In some cases, irate passengers have resorted to wanton destruction of certain facilities at the airports.
“The regulatory authority agrees absolutely with the passengers that the conditions of carriage on their tickets must be upheld by the operating airlines. That means it is our statutory responsibility to ensure that passengers derive value for their money.”
Adurogboye added that the NCAA was well primed to ensure that all aggrieved passengers’ complaints were professionally handled by its consumer protection officers.