By Prince Okafor
No fewer than 425 petrol stations were shut down across 20 Local Government Areas, LGAs, in Lagos State by the Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority, NMDPRA, in the last 10 months of 2021.
This is coming even as the authority urged motorists and other fuel users not to engage in panic buying of Premium Motor Spirit, also known as petrol, stressing that there is adequate stock of the product.
Vanguard gathered that the stations were shut down from various infractions ranging from dispensing of less quantity to consumers, safety breaches and operating without valid licences.
Disclosing this to newsmen during a surveillance operation, the Zonal Operations Controller, NMDPRA, Lagos, Mr Ayorinde Cardoso, stated that 407.13 million litres of PMS are currently available at various depots in Lagos.
According to him, “The purpose of the surveillance was to assure the public of a sufficient supply of petrol and ensure that filling stations were not short-changing consumers and operating in compliance with the prerequisite safety standards of the authority.
“We have been getting information that there is scarcity in some parts of the federation but for Lagos, we have sufficient product.
As of this morning, we have about 407.13 million litres of PMS. So there is no need for any panic buying by members of the public.
Cardoso said apart from product availability, the surveillance exercise was to ensure that there was no under-dispensing of petroleum products by filling stations.
The zonal controller noted that the inspection team was also checking product quality due to recent reports of water ingress in some tanks of filling stations in Lagos.