By Thompson ABISOLA
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has re-sealed three fuel stations in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River.
The station were selling the product at N150 per litre as against the approved N145 per litre.
Mr Bassey Nkanga, DPR Operations Controller in Cross River, who was surveillance of fuel stations across the state, said the stations were re-sealed for violating ‘the seal order’.
Nkanga, who decried the price hike in the affected stations, said they have no reason for their action when other stations were selling at N143, N144 and N145 per litre.
He said that the stations would have to pay a fine of N1million each for the violating.
The three affected stations had been sealed previously by the DPR.
The management of the stations violated the seal order and continued selling the product to customers at N150 per litre.
The Operations Controller explained that the intensified surveillance became necessary to ensure that marketers do not increase pump price during the yuletide.
“Any marketer that is caught cheating in any form, either selling above government price or adjusting the metre will be sanctioned severely.
“We have been doing this in the past two weeks and already some marketers have been sanctioned.
“If you have been a serial violator of the regulations and even if you pay the fine; it is not a guarantee that we will unseal your station for business to commence immediately.
“The level of stability in the sector is nearly 100 per cent especially in Cross River Central and South. We will try our best to sustain this tempo of surveillance activities in all outlets.
“The initiative is a routine exercise. We are only intensifying the monitoring and surveillance activities to ensure that marketers do not take undue advantage of the yuletide period to hike the price,’’ he said.
Nkanga said that DPR in Cross River was doing its best in creating awareness and giving assurance to Nigerians that there would be stability in the sector.
“We are on ground working and the exercise will continue on a daily basis because we want to make sure that the yuletide is hitch free.
“I want to advise depot owners and marketers to abide by all rules and regulations of the DPR, because anyone that is caught cheating the public will be sanctioned,’’ he said.
On safety of depot operators, Nkanga said that the depot owners were maintaining an impressive healthy and safety environment in all their facilities with a view to curb cases of tanker explosion.