02 February 2016, Owerri – The management of the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, has warned all marketers that it would not hesitate to commensurately sanction those who indulge in varying despicable acts in the procurement and distribution of petroleum products.
The Zonal DPR Operations Controller, Ogbuefi Morrison Nwokedi, read the riot act at a one-day sensitization seminar organized by DPR for members of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, and other stakeholders in Owerri.
“Henceforth, the brazen violation of sealed fuel stations by marketers, would attract a penalty of N1 million, in addition to closure for a period of six months. Subsequent violation would attract seizure of operation license,” Nwokedi said.
While warning that the retail outlets of violators would be sealed, the zonal DPR boss equally warned that anybody found to be operating with invalid, adulterated or expired licence, would attract instant closure of the erring marketer.
Ogbuefi Nwokedi, who was not particularly happy at the way DPR officers carrying out their legitimate duties were being molested by aggressive marketers, equally kicked against the diversion and hoarding of fuel, as well as abandonment of the retail outlets on sighting DPR officials.
“When we seal any fuel station, it is for a particular purpose. Again, whenever this occurs, do not defy our action because the penalty is always grave and we must enforce it because we must do our job as monitors and regulators,” Nwokedi explained.
He then called for what he termed “sustainable synergy between the DPR and IPMAN”, adding that the DPR would soon introduce Information Stickers on all available fuel pumps in the South East to inform consumers to dial particular numbers whenever the need arose.
Additionally, Ogbuefi Nwokedi announced that “the establishment’s Health Safety Environmental Audit, HSE, which is to be advisory in nature, will be carried out by DPR officers from this week”.
Speaking also, the Imo State Chairman of IPMAN, Chief Christopher C. Amadi absolved members of his association of allegations of sharp practices in the selling of the commodity.
He pleaded with the federal government to always make the product directly available to his members to enable them to sell at government approved prices.
Vanguard recalls that representatives of the Imo State Police Command, the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, the Federal Road Safety Corps, FRSC, the Owerri Capital Development Authority, OCDA, attended the workshop.