Posted by News Express | 25 August 2015 | 3,901 times
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) says it has sanctioned 87 erring marketers over various offences in Lagos and its environs, while the Controller of Operations, in charge of Adamawa and Taraba States, Mr. Ali Zoka, said 28 filling stations were sealed off for irregularities in the area.
A statement signed by its management said on Monday in Lagos that 67 retail outlets, operating without storage and sale licences or approval to construct a filling station, were also clamped down from Aug. 3 to date.
“In a routine week-long surveillance operation of retail outlets in the Lagos Zonal operations of the Department of Petroleum Resources, we visited 90 petrol filling stations.
“Some had a number of their pumps sealed off, while others had the entire facility completely shut down as a result of various infractions which ranged from under dispensing of petrol, to illegal operation of a station without a license, and, in some cases, outright abandonment of the facility.
“A lot of the filling stations were found to be selling petrol above the stipulated official pump price of N87.00 and even under dispensing by as much as two litres per every 10 litres.
“In other words, consumers were paying for the equivalent of 10 litres of petrol, while actually being served about eight litres.
“In particular, DPR completely sealed up those stations found to have been operating without a licence and have given them the opportunity to formally apply for a licence as a means to regularise their operations.
The statement said that the inspections of retail outlets of the downstream sector were a routine activity that was carried out daily in order to ensure compliance to basic regulations and the continuous availability of products to consumers at official prices.
In Adamawa and Taraba, Zoka, told newsmen in Yola, that the filling stations were sanctioned for violating the government official pump price.
“In the Month of August, after cross inspections by our Technical Operational team, a total of 28 filling stations in Adamawa and Taraba were found selling above N87.
“Those filling stations were slammed with a fine of N100, 000 with immediate effect in addition to being sealed off.”
He expressed regrets that the department also faulted about 50 filling stations in the two states for violating the rules and regulations guiding the operation of filling stations.
“But to my surprise, the owners of the disapproved filling stations returned with letters of waivers from influential people, directing the department to allow them continue with their illegal business.”
Zoka identified lack of adequate staff as a major problem affecting the efficient service delivery of the department in the two states.
He said currently, the department had 18 people, including six technical staff.
According to him, the department has registered and approved 347 filling stations in Adamawa and 278 stations in Taraba.
He advised members of the public to cooperate with the department in ensuring that operators sell at the approved pump price. (NAN)
•Photo shows Fuel Stations
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