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Lawmaker urges caution, regulation of LPG sale in residential areas


Navy parades smugglers with 98 bags of rice in A’Ibom
Representative of Etinan Constituency in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Dennis Akpan, has advocated regulation of the sale of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) in residential and densely populated areas of the state.

He moved the motion titled, “Proliferation of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) Sales Outlets Within Residential Areas in Akwa Ibom State: A Ticking Time Bomb Waiting to Explode,” during plenary yesterday.

He argued that regulation of cooking gas outlets in residential areas would go a long way in curbing incidences of explosion, stressing that it would also ensure that gas outlets meet all safety criteria and are duly certified by relevant agencies.

Akpan recalled recent fire outbreaks in Iwuokpom in Ibeno and Sabon Tasha area of Kaduna State adding, “In as much as LPG is an essential commodity used for cooking, it is highly combustible and requires extra-precaution in its handling, storage and usage.

“Many retail outlets have sprung up in the state, mostly in residential areas and even on roadsides by these gas vendors. It is not only crude, but dangerous and capable of causing explosions that could lead to loss of lives and property,” he said.

Akpan also requested that the State Ministry of Environment and Petroleum Resources and Akwa Ibom State Environmental Protection and Waste Management Agency (AKSEPWMA) should ensure the enforcement of relevant laws relating to the establishment and location of these LPG vending outlets and facilities.

Besides, Speaker of the House, Aniekan Bassey, announced minor changes in the leadership of some standing committees.

In the new arrangement, the House Committee on Science and Technology, which had the Speaker as Interim Chairman is now headed by representative of Ini Constituency and Chief Whip of the House, Emmanuel Ekpeyong.

Also, the Committee on Petroleum Matters is now headed by Mfon Idung of Etim Ekpo/Ika Constituency, while Effiong Johnson (APC) of Mbo Constituency is now Chairman, House Committee on Boundary and Conflicts Resolution, formerly headed by Ekpenyong.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Navy, Forward Operating Base (FOB), Ibaka, Mbo Council Area has arrested five suspects and seized 98 bags of rice from them.

Parading the suspects yesterday in Ibaka, Commanding Officer FOB, Captain Peter Yilme, handed them and the items over to the Deputy Superintendent of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Garuba Hassan.

According to him, the suspects were arrested at the Agbani area during routine patrol by a Navy gunboat, noting that the continued arrests showed the unrelenting efforts of smugglers to continue with their illicit trade in spite of repeated warnings.

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