By Chidi Nkwopara
OWERRI—THE Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, Zonal Operations Office, Owerri, has sealed several filling stations for selling premium motor spirit above the official pump price.
Confirming this development to Vanguard in Owerri, the Zonal Controller of Operations, ZCO, Mr. Peter Ikechukwu Ijeh, said they swung into action to bring sanity into petroleum marketing in their area of jurisdiction.
“We have sealed a number of filling stations for varying offences, including selling above the Federal Government’s approved pump price, under-delivery of the product and hoarding”, the ZCO said.
He was not particularly happy that “most petroleum marketers were taking undue advantage of the Christmas and New Year festivities to hike petroleum price.”
Speaking also, the Acting Assistant Director of Operations, DPR Owerri Zone, Mr. Ernest O. Chukwu, said that “12 filling stations have been sanctioned since we started the exercise”.
While promising that “the operation will continue, for as long as petroleum marketers choose to brazenly flout government policies”, Mr. Chukwu also disclosed that “a marketer pays a fine of N100,000 into the Federal Government coffers, for selling above the approved pump price”.
He also warned that the violation of any sealed filling station attracts a fine of N1 million.