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Published On: Tue, Feb 20th, 2018

FG probes fuel marketers over hoarding, price hike

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From Osakhare Erese Asaba

The Federal Government has launched investigation to fish out petroleum product marketers who are under dispensing or selling above the regulated pump price across the country.
Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibeh Kachikwu who made this disclosure in Onicha-Ugbo after the Delta North Senatorial District meeting of the All Progressives Congress (APC) , said that those found wanting would be made to face disciplinary actions.
Kachikwu warned dealers of the Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol, particularly to maintain the N145 per liter pump price of fuel or face stiffening fines.
According to him, officials of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), were currently engaging fuel stations across the country and closing down defaulters of the regulated pump price.
The minister who was particular about Asaba added that further investigations would be made across the state to fish out defaulters and if found, strict disciplinary actions would be carried out against them.
With the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) officials going round petrol stations selling above the official pump price of N145 per litre, petroleum marketers have devised another fraudulent way to dupe Nigerians.
In Asaba, the Delta State capital, our reporter who went round the town to check the situation reports that most of the petrol stations have adjusted their metres to N145 per litre but under-dispense the quantity to buyers.
The checks revealed that what the petrol stations did was to adjust to N145 per litre on the metres but adjusted the quantity that would be dispensing out to buyers.
In this scenario, though the metres indicate N145 per liter, the quantity dispensed to unsuspecting customers is between N180 and N200 per litre thereby defrauding members of the public millions of naira daily.
Speaking to our reporter, Mr. Bright Emaviwe, a customer at one of the popular petrol stations in Asaba, said many of the stations are indulging on under-dispensing of the product to buyers. According to him, “this is a 10 litre Jerry Can, during the time they were selling N180 and N200 per litre, it took about N2000 to fill it, it is the same amount today, even though the stations adjusted the pump price to reflect N145”.
Another, Mr. Egbe Nwosu who spoke, decried the same experience in the hands of petrol marketers, saying that they are duping Nigerians millions of naira through their latest fraudulent antics of under dispensing.
“The situation is like that in other towns and cities across the country”, he added. They called on DPR and the Federal Government to go beyond looking at what is reflected on the metres but ensure that the right quantity is dispensed to buyers.
Meanwhile, the DPR has sealed about 10 petrol stations in Rivers State for under dispensing petrol to buyers and has threatened to seal more stations that indulge in the fraudulent act.

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