By Ike Uchechukwu
CALABAR—THE Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, in Cross River State, has shut two petrol fillings stations in Calabar for selling petrol above the government approved price of N145 per litre.
Controller of DPR in Cross River State, Mr Bassey Nkanga, who shut the filling stations while monitoring the fuel situation, yesterday, in Calabar, said the stations violated government directives.
Nkanga said it was wrong for oil marketers to increase the pump price when the Federal Government had not done so.
Speaking with newsmen after a routine inspection, Nkanga said the Federal Government was doing everything possible to end the current fuel scarcity.
Vanguard learned that the affected filling stations were selling PMS between N190 per litre and N205 per litre as against the approved pump price of N145.
According to him, the DPR would continue its surveillance on all petrol stations in the state to ensure that a litre of petrol was sold at N145 per litre to the public.
He said:”We have not recorded any hoarding situation in Calabar. We have heard of a few stations selling above government approved prices and that is why we went out to monitor the sales and make sure that they sell accordingly. We have received calls from the northern part of Cross River State that some people are selling above the approved pump price. We are moving into that area and our presence there will end that situation. We have advised people against panic buying. We have told them not to store petrol in their houses. We have made several efforts through the media in appealing to members of the public not to panic-buy because in a few days, the product will be available for all. The only assurance I have is that government is making every suitable effort to make sure that the situation is normalized. We are doing intelligence report in the depot to fish out those that might be making effort to sell above what it approved. We have also issued warning to all the depot managers that anyone who is caught doing business with bulk buyers or diverting the product will be penalized.”
He hinted that due to intelligence monitoring, his office had apprehended product being diverted to Adamawa State, noting that he had already alerted his counterpart in Yola to take action on the matter.