Yenagoa—Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, weekend, said its audit of petrol stations in Bayelsa State, revealed that illegal petrol stations out numbered legal stations in the state.
According to DPR, officials of the Department have been empowered with new technology to detect fake filling stations and those engaged in under pricing.
The Operations Controller of DPR in Bayelsa, B. Nkanga at a stakeholders’ meeting with members of the Independent Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, said the discovery had led to warning of the petrol station owners in Bayelsa State over petroleum products diversion and under dispensing.
Nkanga said: “Bayelsans have continued to complain over the price regime and under dispensing by petrol stations in Yenagoa metropolis. Henceforth, any petrol station found diverting petroleum products, engaging in under dispensing and illegal price regime would face the sanctions from DPR.
“DPR has uncovered illegal petrol stations in Bayelsa State, which have been reported to law enforcement agencies. DPR called the meeting to put IPMAN on notice, that it is now well equipped to detect adulterated petroleum. Any petrol station caught engaging in wholesome practices would be sealed off without delay.
“After this meeting, all sanctions due to offending petrol stations would be meted out. Product diversion carries severe penalty. We had observed that products sent to Bayelsa State are not discharged at the designated stations. The quantity sent to Bayelsa is not much, so how on earth can some people still divert the little one sent to the state. Petrol stations under dispense in Bayelsa. This is not proper; this is bad and tantamount to cheating. DPR will no longer tolerate under- dispensing in Bayelsa.”
IPMAN spokesman, Mr Samuel Anthony, commended the leadership of DPR for its efforts in restoring sanity to petroleum distribution and sales in Bayelsa State, saying that the body will support DPR in its quest to stop product diversion, under dispensing and other illegal activities going on in petrol stations in the state.