The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), the downstream oil sector regulator in Nigeria has sealed 96 filling stations in Kano and Jigawa states, for selling Petroleum Motor Spirit (PMS) above the official pump price of N145 naira per liter and other offences.
Other offences that warranted the clamp down to reduce the social and economic impact include: diversion, hoarding, under delivery of petroleum products, the usage of faulty pumps to dispense fuel as well as perpetual violation of seal order.
The Operations Comptroller in charge of Kano and Jigawa, Engr. Buba Abubakar said 6 out of the total number have been shut down for six months with a fine of N1 million naira each, for perpetually selling above the pump price, after series of warning and violation of seal order.
“Must of the filling station have paid there fines which is normally N270 naira per liter of fuel multiply by the quantity of fuel for which the filling station is found wanting,” Abubakar emphasized
He said the operations were carried out by DPR surveillance teams involving the Directorate of State Security and other sister agencies.
He said the 96 stations were shut between December, 2017 and February 13th this year.
The comptroller, however lamented that Kano and Jigawa states are currently being under supplied with petroleum products as they have on the average just 30% and 20% respectively of their daily supply needs.
“Kano for example needs about 87 trucks of 33,000 liters per day to wet the city but currently we are only getting between 30 percent while Jigawa is getting only 20 percent of its daily need. But the supply is getting increased gradually by the NNPC by the addition of one or two trucks on some days,” he explained.
He said despite the short fall the DPR is working round the clock to ensure that any quantity of fuel giving to the state is well monitored for effective dispensing and sale to the public at the official pump price.
He said a has been “set up to on daily basis announce to the public the number committee of trucks allocated to the state and the filling stations that they can be found.”
He said the regulatory agency is working against the field day, some black marketers are having because of round tripping caused by taxi drivers and Tricycle riders who buy at the official price from filling stations and go to off-load it for black marketers to sell at higher cost to the publics and come back to join the queue.
‘We have instructed filling station to sell to one taxi and one tricycle per day to cob this round tripping,” he revealed.
He denied the allegation of connivance with marketers who sell above the pump price to the public.
“Normally we monitor them for 3 to for hours when the have supplies at their filling station but sometimes, when we move to other stations they begin to sell at higher cost and the numbers of DPR staff for the operations is not enough to monitor them at a go. However we are doing our best otherwise it could have been worse,” noted Abubakar.
DPR is the downstream oil sector regulator in Nigeria saddled with the responsibility ensuring the delivery and correct sale of Premium motor Spirit, PMS.
The fuel scarcity in Kano like other parts of Nigeria reared its ugly head in early November, 2017.
Kano state north western Nigeria is the most populated state and the second biggest commercial city in the nation of over 160 million people according to a 2006 census figure.