The lingering fuel scarcity in Nigeria has affected all areas of life and the economy. Even the telecoms giants MTN, Airtel and Etisalat, issued official statements warning subscribers of the potential impact that the fuel shortage could have on the quality of service.
Individuals and businesses alike were also affected with increases in cost of transportation and price of food stuffs .
While many may have wished for it to end, some people actually made profits from the lack of fuel – and that is apart from the black marketers.
A release by online shopping community Kaymu, revealed that the shortage of fuel affected the company and its customers in a unique way.
Nigerian law prohibits the sale of fuel outside of registered gas stations; despite this, the online shopping community witnessed increased inquiry on the sale of fuel on its platform. Twitter fan @donfowzy posted “@KaymuNigeria Please I want to buy diesel”, while other social media users seeking an alternative means of buying fuel, were disappointed to find that they couldn’t.
This resulted in Kaymu carrying out a survey on Nigerians’ willingness to buy fuel online. The findings revealed that 73% of Nigerians were willing to buy fuel online if the law permitted. The survey also showed that 19% of Nigerians were unaware of the prohibition against selling fuel outside of gas stations.
Interestingly the online marketplace was found to have increased visits and purchases during this period which may be attributable to the restriction of movement caused by the high cost of transportation.
According to Tomiwa Oladele, Head of PR and Communications Kaymu, “It’s remarkable to see how Nigerians have taken to e-commerce. The confidence and willingness to buy a commodity such as fuel online not only exposes Nigerians frustration at the fuel crisis but reveals their acceptability of alternative and more convenient ways of buying and selling”.
“The rise in orders during the fuel scarcity has necessitated ancillary delivery and logistics processes to meet the growing demand of online shoppers”, she stated.
Although the strike action by Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN) and National Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) was called off days ago, the fuel scarcity persists as many filling stations in the Lagos Metropolis are still not selling the product.