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GTB Shuts Operations Over Fuel Scarcity

Fuel scarcity

The Guarantee Trust Bank, GTB, said it would be shutting down operations in all its branches nationwide by 1pm on Monday over the grinding scarcity of petroleum products which has hit many parts of the country in recent weeks.

The bank said it was forced to do this as it could no longer get the needed diesel to power its daily operational needs nationwide.

It noted that, sadly, the current shortage of petroleum products in the country had greatly limited its ability to supply diesel to all its branches which subsequently made it impossible to continue its normal branch operations.

“Whilst we have had to take this step to close branch operations early, we would like to seek your understanding at this time, and assure you that we will continue to work hard at finding alternative solutions to this situation and will advise you once the situation has abated,” the bank said in a brief statement which was sent to customers.

It however said that all its alternative channels would remain “fully functional and available for all personal and
business banking.”

The nation has been hit by a severe shortage of fuel that has crippled many businesses in the past four months.

A visit to most filling stations across Abuja, Lagos other major cities showed that they are under lock with petrol attendants milling around the empty premises.

Very few petrol station that sell the product have to contend with long queues of desperate motorists struggling to gain access to their premises in order to buy fuel.

For many, the last resort now seems to be the ubiquitous black marketers who can be found along major streets in many cities.

In the outskirts of Abuja, many filing stations sell fuel but at prices ranging from N140-N190 per litre. At the black market in Abuja, petrol goes for as much as N300 per litre.

In Lagos, some petrol stations, particularly in the outskirts, are also selling at between N13 per litre and N180 per litre. At the black market, residents are forced to pay as much as N500 per litre. One desperate person said that he bought 50 litres of petrol for N30,000

The fuel scarcity has affected many sectors of the economy, the most obvious being transportation, particularly air travel. Over the weekend, airlines routinely cancelled flights as shortage of aviation fuel hit the industry.

By Monday, the aviation industry had nearly ground to a halt as many airlines had to cancel flights due to non-availability of aviation. Some airlines rescheduled their morning flights to late afternoon, telling passengers that they would have to go to Togo or Benin Republic to source aviation fuel.

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