By Victor Adeoti
Osogbo – The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) on Thursday sealed 15 filling stations and two gas plants for non compliance with global best practices.
Mr Ademola Makinde, DPR’s Operations Controller in Osogbo, disclosed this while speaking with newsmen after the department’s routine surveillance of filling and gas plants in the state.
Makinde said the exercise was part of the core mandate of DPR to ensure that the people were not shortchanged by petroleum marketers.
He said the exercise would also help check product hoarding and diversion while enforcing sale at the approved pump prices.
Makinde, who noted that 29 filling stations were visited during the exercise, said the sealed filling and gas stations were underdispensing and operating without a valid licence.
” Today,we visited 29 filling stations; while 15 were sealed for underdispensing and operating without a valid licence, seven were not in use.
” Additionally,two gas plants were sealed for offences varying from operating without a valid license to non-compliance with safety standards.
“And one good thing about DPR rules is that there are penalties if you flout them.
“If you are underdispensing to a marginal level, we may require you to go and reset your pump and we will inspect for possible reopening.
” But if there are critical infractions, penalties ranges from N100, 000 to N1 million, N1 million if by chance any marketer tampered with the DPR’s official seal, ” he said.
Makinde, however, said the department and the petroleum marketers were not enemies but partners in progress.
” To the marketers, I have to emphasise this, we are not enemies but rather we are all partners working for the same goal.
“One of the mandate of DPR is to sustain marketers to grow their businesses, but that can only be done if they cooperate and do not cut corners and sidetrack DPR,” Makinde said.
He called on the people to always report any form of sharp practices by petroleum marketers to the department for appropirate action.
“If anybody reports any form of sharp practice to us, we will mobilise our officials to such filling station and we will take appropirate action,” he said.
Makinde gave the assurance that the ongoing exercise would be sustained to ensure all facilities were monitored in the interest of the general public.