By Igbawase Ukumba in Lafia
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has said it has completed plans to extend its clampdown on illegal gas retailers currently going on in Abuja to Nasarawa State.
The DPR controller in charge of Nasrawa State, Abdulrahman Mohammed, disclosed this to THISDAY Saturday in Lafia during an interaction, adding that the DPR would as well go after illegal skips mounted in residential areas.
To ensure the success of the clampdown, the Nasarawa DPR controller said his office was collaborating with the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to go after those without DPR permit but were operating in the state.
He said: “We want to collaborate with NSCDC to go after them. Anyone that does not have DPR permit to operate will not be allowed to operate in Nasarawa State.
“Just as our zonal office in Abuja has started that exercise, we are going after illegal skips mounted in residential areas. The next line is these illegal retaillers who will just take 50kg cylinder, overturn it and be refilling into smaller cylinders which is not supposed to be.”
Mohammed therefore warned all gas retailers to obtain DPR.
“So if there is anybody that is refilling gas or selling gas without DPR permit, he/she is doing that illegally,” he maintained.
Meanwhile, residents of Ombi community in Lafia, the capital of Nasrawa State, have petitioned the Lafia office of DPR over the siting of a gas plant in their community.
The spokesman of the Ombi community, Timothy Anzaku, disclosed this to journalists Saturday in Lafia, arguing that siting of the gas plant in their community portends great danger to lives, property and environment of people in the Ombi community.
He said: “Their was a gas explosion in Lafia metropolis which led to the loss of several lives and property worth millions of naira. The statement of the governor and some members of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly condemning the incident and further indicating that gas stations be sited far away from residents allayed our fears.”
However, when the DPR controller for Nasarawa State was contacted, he assured the Ombi community of their safety, as according to him, “Apparatus designed to detect eruption of any disaster in a gas plant have been mobilised for installation in the plant to nip in the bud in case of any eventuality.”