By Amby UnezeÂ in Owerri
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has sealed over 20 filling stations in parts of Imo State over irregularities ranging from hoarding of premium motor spirit (PMS), selling above government approved pump price ofÂ Â
Some of the areas visited by the DPR motoring team included Amaraku, Anara, Umualumaku, all in Isiala Mbano and Ehime Mbano Local Government Areas. Others were Ahiazu Mbaise, Ezinihitte Mbaise and Aboh Mbaise LGAs. During the motoring, several filling stationsâ€™ Attendants were found to have abandoned their duty posts and absconded their stations on sighting DPR officials.
At Home and Overseas Oil Company Limited, Amaraku, the manager of the station was arrested by men of the Nigeria Civil Defence and Security Corp (NCDSC) attached to the DPR motoring team for proving stubborn and refusing to change to the government approved pump price of N145 per litre from the N185 per litre being sold to motorists.
Most of the sealed stations were as a result of the abscondment by the mangers and attendants as obtained in Fred Iyke and Sons Industries Limited, Bonimas Petroleum, Demmax Oil and Gas Limited, Durumugo Resources Limited, FNOAP Petroleum Oil Limited, Ugo-Rambo Resources Limited, Boek Nigeria Limited, Selins Oil, Chiolee Nigeria Limited, Starchem Nigeria Limited, Ben and Ben Petroleum Nigeria Limited, Benuaks Oil Services, Stevejet Petroleum, among others.
Leader of the DPR team and Zonal Operations Controller, Mr. Peter Ijih represented by Mr. Femi Imiegha, who is the Head, Finance and Accounts Division and Mr. Ernest Chukwu, Head of Downstream condemned the attitude of some marketers who abandoned their stations on sighting DPR motoring team.Â
He said â€œit is better to meet them open their station selling at above pump price than absconding which earns them the highest sanction from the departmentâ€.
According to him, we are not taking this lightly. We are taking it as total hoarding of the products and this attracts stiff penalty.Â
Once the station is sealed, the marketer need to come to the office of DPR to explain and pay the appropriate penalty. For their managers and attendants to abscond while sighting DPR officials is no less than to compound their problems.