Petrol sells for N170 per litre in Zamfara
An acute scarcity of petroleum products has forced an increase in the pump price of petrol to N170 as against approved N145 per litre in Zamfara.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that some of the filling stations in the state were shut while others were selling the product between N165 and N170 per litre.
The Kaduna Zonal Operations Office of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) had, last two weeks, sealed 13 filling stations in the state for selling the commodity above approved price.
A check by NAN, however, shows that only few stations in the state are selling petrol at approved price of N145 per litre.
The Leader of the Task Force, Kaduna DPR Zonal Office, Mr Aliyu Usman, told newsmen that selling the commodity above price was one of malpractices observed by the department in the state.
Usman said apart from price increase, “we also observed various malpractices such as hoarding and diversion of the petroleum products, under-dispensation and neglecting guidelines on safety of operational facilities in most of the stations.
“Based on our findings, majority of the filling stations are involved in one of two malpractices,
“We are going to continue with these inspections in Zamfara to ensure effective compliance by the marketers of the commodity.
“We will make sure that we put marketers in check because the consuming public are suffering and DPR will not continue to allow some unlawful marketers to make things difficult for the people”.
He, therefore, urged marketers in the state to avoid sharp practices in order run their businesses in a legal way.
Reacting to the allegations, the Chairman of Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) Gusau Depot Branch, Alhaji Sirajo Kamba said that the major cause of the increase in pump price of petrol as against the official price of N145 per liter was the increase in price from the supplying private depot.
“Most of the filling stations selling the commodity beyond government official price are getting it from private depots and they don’t sell the commodity as directed by the Federal Government.
“Even the DPR is aware of the price changes from them, as mandated by law, DPR should monitor our business activities, it is also mandated to check the excesses of the private depot.
“We got the product between N139 and N140 per liter from the private depots against N133 as directed by the government and this is the major reason for the hike.
“And you know we cannot run at a loss. We have been calling on the Federal Government to investigate and address these issues,’’ he said.
According to him, as a result of the delay in supplying the commodity from government depot, the independent marketers patronise private depots which prices are higher than the government’s.
Kamba, therefore, urged the government to review the current system of supplying the commodity, to reduce its cost to the end users.
He said that IPMAN as a law abiding association was ever ready to cooperate with the government and other stakeholders to ensure that petroleum supply improved in the country.