TVC E. Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN), at the weekend, stopped supply of fuel to Ekiti State.
They are protesting the demolition of four filling stations under construction in Ado-Ekiti by Governor Ayo Fayose.
The demolition, they claimed, “was done in bad faith and malice”.
The governor, who revoked their Certificates of Occupancy, said he would not allow construction of filling stations in “unauthorised places”, such as residential areas and ordered marketers to apply for recertification.
The situation has inflicted hardship on motorists, motorcyclists and commuters as residents travel to neighbouring states to buy fuel. Black marketers are cashing in on the situation to make brisk business.
Only the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) filling station at Ajebamidele was dispensing fuel yesterday.
It was besieged by motorists who formed a long queue.
Others who could not withstand the rigours travelled as far as Iju, Itaogbolu and Akure in Ondo State to buy the commodity.
A senior IPMAN executive said yesterday that members had received an order from the Abuja headquarters to stop supply of fuel to Ekiti.
He said petrol marketers were demonised by the governor, who called them thieves and other unprintable names on a live radio and television programme.
“Withdrawal of their services was one of the ways to send a strong message.” The source said: “Yes, this order came from Abuja and it is above oil dealers in Ekiti State.
“Our people in Abuja were not happy with how the members are being threatened in Ekiti.
“No tanker can enter the state. But there is an instruction that we can sell the one we have in our underground tanks after which the directive will take effect.”