Sylvester Idowu in Warri
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Warri Area Office weekend sealed off seven petrol stations and four gas plants following a routine surveillance in Delta.
The stations were sealed off on Friday in Warri and Ughelli over offences bordering on under-dispensing, operating without valid licenses, violating safety rules among others.
The Warri Zonal Operations Controller, who was represented by Mr Chuks Onyenefa, Head, Retail Outlets Monitoring Unit of the DPR led a team of the regulatory agency on the surveillance operations.
Asuquo gave the names of the erring stations as: Godstime Petroleum Nigeria Limited and Fomas Marine and Engineering Service, both in Warri.
He also listed other defaulted retail outlets to include: Pemmazinor Limited, Denero Global, Moonrose Petroleum Limited, Eyebira Oil and Gas Limited and F-Circle Vissionex Limited all in Ughelli.
Asuquo said the four gas plants were: Fajo LPG, Johntel Gas, Airgas and one refilling gas outlet without identity all in Ughelli.
The operations controller said that the gas plants were sanctioned for operating without valid licenses and against safety rules.
He said: “We sealed seven petrol stations and four gas plants for under-dispensing, operating without valid licenses, violating DPR safety rules and obstructing our job by locking up their stations on hearing that we are on the field.
“The level of compliance is average, there is no reason for marketers to be cutting corners.
“The Federal Government is doing so much to ensure the public get petroleum product. It is sabotage and frustration of government policies for marketers to take advantage of the festive season and deny consumers values for their money.
“The essence of this routine surveillance is to discourage such things, do your business in a legitimate way. It is going to be a continuous exercise, anyone found wanting will be sanctioned accordingly,” he said.
Asuquo frowned at the proliferation of illegal gas plants and advised the operators to seek the necessary approval and licenses from the DPR.
“It is so disheartening to see what they are doing in the gas business. Gas is volatile, some of the operators do not learn the trade. Most of the gas plants we sealed were built by quacks without putting professionalism into consideration.
“There was one we sealed that was built sharing same premises with residential building occupied by people and a church, it is a time bomb waiting to explode. If accident happens, there will be so much casualties.
“They should stop operating illegally, if they must operate gas business, they should come to DPR to seek the necessary approval and licenses to do the business,” he said.