CLAIM: Fact-checking Video Purportedly Showing Nigeria’s Fuel Scarcity Queue in 1974

Adeyemi Okediran

A video has gone viral on the internet for the past few days. The video was said to be a recap of what Nigeria has experienced in the mid-1970.

The caption in the viral video reads: “Fuel scarcity in 1974! Pls check if you can see the type of car you are using, if not, let’s take life easy! Nothing is permanent in this life!”



It is important to fact-check whether this video shows fuel scarcity in the 1979s amidst the recent fuel scarcity in Nigeria at the moment.

Nigeria has been experiencing nationwide fuel scarcity for the past 3 weeks, hence there is a need to confirm this viral video which may heighten the panic among the citizen.



N-VA extracted a screenshot from the video, and went on to fact-check and verify its authenticity.



Is There Fuel Scarcity in 1974?

According to an article published on WIKI, there is fuel scarcity between 1966 – 1975 during General Yakubu Gowon’s regime as Head of State when he increased the price of petrol from 6k to 8.45k.


History of Fuel scarcity in Nigeria

According to a report published on Statista, Nigeria was the leading oil producer in Africa as of 2020. Oil production amounted to 86.9 million metric tons in the country. Angola and Algeria followed with 64.5 million and 57.6 million metric tons, respectively. In the same year, the overall production of oil in Africa, including crude oil, shale oil, oil sands, and NGLs, reached 327.3 million metric tons. Moreover, the African output of oil per day amounted to some 8.4 million barrels in 2019, variating minimally compared to the previous year.

For the past fifty years in Nigeria, fuel scarcity has often happened prior to a hike in fuel price. hence, the researcher took a long look at the history of fuel price hikes in Nigeria from General Yakubu Gowon’s administration to date.

General Yakubu Gowon (1966 – 1975) — During Gowon’s tenure as Head of State, he was said to have increased the price of petrol from 6k to 8.45k.

General Murtala Mohammed (1975 – 1976) —Murtala Muhammed increased the pump price of petrol from 8.45k to 9k.

Major General Olusegun Obasanjo (1976 – 1979)— Obasanjo increased the pump price from 9k to 15.3k during his time as President.

Alhaji Shehu Shagari (1979 – 1983) — The civilian President increased the pump price of petrol by over 30% from 15.3k to 20k.

General Ibrahim Babangida (1985 – 1993) — The pump price remained the same during Buhari’s time as President, but when Babangida assumed power, he increased the pump price a total of four times: 20k to 39.5k; 5k to 42k; 42k to 60k (Private Vehicles); and 60k to 70k.

Ernest Shonekan (1993) — During Ernest Shonekan’s brief tenure, he increased the price of petrol by over 700% from 70k to N5

General Sanni Abacha (1993 – 1998) — Abacha was in power for 5 years and his tenure was accompanied by fuel scarcity. Initially, he reduced the petrol prices from N5 to N25k but later increased it to N15 before reducing it to N11.

General Abdulsalami Abubakar (1998 – 1999) — Abubakar was the interim President between 1998 and 1999 and his tenure saw some movements in terms of fuel price from N11 to N25, then to N20.

Olusegun Obasanjo (1999 – 2007) — During Obasanjo’s tenure as President, the price of petrol experienced several changes over a period of eight years: N20 to N30; N30 to N22; N22 to N26; N26 to N42; N42 to N50; N50 to N65; and N65 to N75.

President Umaru Musa Yaradua (2007 – 2010) —Yar’Adua was able to drop the price of petrol from N75 to N65 during his tenure as President

President Goodluck Jonathan (2010 – 2015) — The pump price changed three times during the tenure of Goodluck Jonathan from N65 to N141, then reduced to N97, dropped further to N87.

President Muhammed Buhari (2015 till date) — Buhari increased the price of petrol from N87 to N143 in 2016.

Before now, the most recent fuel scarcity issue happened in the last quarter of 2017. Another factor that causes fuel scarcity in Nigeria is the fuel subsidy payment by successive administrations.

The recent fuel scarcity issue in Nigeria began in February 2022 due to the importation and distribution of adulterated PMS by NNPC and marketers in Nigeria.


Does The Viral Video Truly Depict Fuel Scarcity in Nigeria in 1974?

In the rare footage, very huge queues of vehicles can be seen, as motorists fight each other while waiting for their turn to buy petrol, and also the short clip gives you a glimpse of the types of car that plied the highways in the 1970s in Nigeria

Some of the cars that were captured in the clip include a Volkswagen Beetle (Ijapa), Peugeot 504 Station Wagon, and 2nd-Generation Toyota Corolla Wagon.

Other iconic cars spotted include a Peugeot 404 sedan, fourth Generation Toyota Crown, Land Rover Defender, Land Rover, Renault 12, and Volkswagen Transporter bus.

To ascertain the video’s authenticity, the researcher captured one of the scenes in the short clip and verified it through a reverse image search engine.

The image was subjected to Google reverse image search, and it was confirmed that the video was shot in the 1970s.

The one-minute clip first appeared online on May 25, 2021, when it was shared on YouTube by a recognized Nigerian automobile website, Autojosh giving insight into the nostalgic 1970s. with an article



The video purportedly showing the fuel scarcity queue in Nigeria in 1974 is TRUE.


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