By AbdulSalam Muhammad
KANO – Kano/Jigawa operations of the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, has sealed three filling stations in Jigawa state, north western Nigeria for selling above the official pump price of N145, hoarding and outright diversion of the product.
The downstream regulatory agency also sold thousands of liters of fuel to the public at the official price, especially in fuel stations suspected to be selling above N145 per liter but usually revert to the official price on citing the DPR surveillance team based on a tip off from their informants.
The DPR Kano/Jigawa operations team leader, Paul Jehzi, while briefing the press shortly after the clampdown over the weekend said that at Garba Mohammed investment oil company Ltd in Shwarin area of the state, the station was found to have diverted 130, 000 litters of fuel which warranted outright sealing of the premises.
“We had discovered that this station had diverted two trucks of particularly petroleum products of 40,000 liters each. On coming again we discovered that another 50, 000 liters given to the company just yesterday has not been discharged. As it is 130 liters have not been delivered, that means it has been diverted. That is why we had to seal the station and fine them appropriately,” he said
He said that Jahun Petroleum Nigeria Ltd was also found to be selling at N180 per liter with a stock of over 25, 900 liters and was automatically closed down. He added that Tazara Petroleum Ltd around Jahun roundabout was also found to have a stock of 11,300 liters but was not selling at all, as such it was promptly sealed.
Jehzi explained that at” NNPC filling station, Olusegun Obasanjo way Dutse, the state capital, the team had to ordered the sale of 2,000 out of the 3,000 liters reserve of PMS to the public. The fuel was said to have been reserved for government officials.”
The clamp down exercise by the DPR was a carried out, in collaboration with the Department of States Security Service, DSS.
Nushe Business Resources Investment LTD , Hadeja – Kano road, Kachako filling station along Dutse – kano road among others were suspected to be selling above the official pump price for which DSS operatives were deployed to ensure the sale of the product at the normal rate.
Elated vehicle and motor bike operators in their numbers, rushed to buy the product following the development.
“We give out contact numbers to buyers of PMS at filling stations to quickly call us and the security operatives as soon as they notice change in price and the new strategy is really working and helping a lot, ” stated Paul.
When the team visited Forte Oil, Salbas oil Ltd, Hillside Investment industries Ltd among others they were found to be selling at the official price of N145 in the presence of the men of the Nigeria Civil Defense Corp.
“It is the resolve of DPR that petroleum product is sold at every nook and cranny of Jigawa state at the government approved price of 145 per liter. From Dutse to shuwarn , Jahun and Hadeja, it is a wide coverage.
Of most stations visited they were found to be selling at the official price of 145, which is a good development except for the few that we have to seal for outright diversion or selling above the official pump price,“ the DPR official re-emphasized.
He said that Jigawa state is under supplied as it received only 5 trucks of 33, 000 liters of fuel according to the manifest, instead of 30 trucks of 33, 000 liters per day.
He also lamented the shortage of staff in Kano/Jigawa DPR office saying the downstream regulator has only 21 staff including drivers to cover the 71 LGAs in the states.
The clamp down is an addition to the 96 filling stations that were sealed between December and Mid February, as announced by the agency last week.