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By Adedapo Adesanya

As part of efforts to clamp down on petrol stations outlets engaging in sharp practices, the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has threatened to apply fines on erring companies.

The regulatory agency announced that any filling station caught under-dispensing petroleum products anywhere in the country would be sanctioned N250,000 per pump.

The Zonal Controller of DPR, Port Harcourt Zone, Mr Bassey Nkangha, made this disclosure over the weekend at a meeting with stakeholders, including downstream operators, retail outlets operators and depot facilities operators in Rivers State.

Mr Nkangha also warned against hoarding of products by petrol stations, maintaining that the federal government has not increased the pump price of premium motor spirit (PMS), commonly known as petrol.

“We do not tolerate under-dispensing. By law, that is why we were set up. I believe in quality, quantity, integrity and safety. We don’t play with it. If you are caught under-dispensing, there is a fine per pump of N250,000.

“The marketers know. If there is anything that marketers in Rivers State dread, it is being caught selling and or under-dispensing. We call it pump efficiency and accuracy.

“If you are to sell one litre for N10, it must be one litre for N10. No cutting of corners in any way. We view that as an attempt to increase the price through the backdoor and we do not tolerate that,” he said.

On the issue of increment in fuel price by filling stations in the state, the DPR Zonal boss said operatives of the agency are on surveillance across depots and petrol stations to ensure compliance with stipulated guidelines.

Mr Nkangha said the price of PMS remains N148.17 for depot price and between N162 and N168 per litre for retail price, emphasising that the federal government has not increased the pump price of petrol.

“As I speak, my people are already out there carrying out surveillance. Surveillance is not only for fuel stations but also in depots, we have people there. We check through the deports to ensure that the prices they are giving are in line with stipulated guidelines.

“N148.17 has been stipulated, there is no increment. The government has stated that it has not increased the price, we expect everyone to sell at the stipulated price.

“The DPR is there to ensure that fuel is given to consumers at the stipulated prices and at stipulated quantity, and also to ensure that petroleum products met specific standards and specification,” he stated.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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