PPPRA blacklists station, dispenses free fuel in Lagos
In a bid to check the unwholesome activities of some filling stations across the country hoarding and selling fuel above the pump price of N145 per litre, the monitoring team of Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency (PPPRA) yesterday blacklisted a filling station in Igbogbo community of Ikorodu, Lagos State and dispensed the product free to motorists.
The incident occurred when the management and attendants of a Mobil filling station situated along Igbogbo-Baiyeku road fled at the sight of the PPPRA monitoring team, who were on tour of filling stations in Lagos in response to the complaints over excesses of some outlets creating artificial scarcity by hoarding and arbitrarily inflating the pump price.
When the team arrived the scene, aggrieved motorists and other customers told The Guardian that acting on a tip-off, the attendants ran when they got information the monitoring team was headed for the station. They alleged that the station was selling at N180 per litre during the day and N250 per litre at night, adding that the station also collects N100 on every gallon of fuel bought.
A commercial bus driver, Muyideen Adesokan, said it was almost his turn to buy when the attendants shut down the pumps and fled. “They have fuel and were selling it at N180 per litre. It was when they heard that task force was coming that they closed and chased us away,” he claimed.
A tricycle operator, who identified himself as Waterboy Omolore, corroborated Adesokan’s claims.When officials of the PPPRA put a call through to the manager of the station to meet with them, he informed them that he was away and could not come down but instead requested that the station’s security official call the supervisor or any other attendant to meet the team.
After efforts to get the station management to come forward proved abortive, the PPPRA team decided to make the product available to the people free.
Earlier, when the team visited Remdabson Oil & Gas Ltd along Ayangburen Road, Ikorodu, it was observed that out of the three pumps with double nozzles, only one pump with one nozzle was being used to dispense fuel.
When queried about this, manager of the station, Yetunde Dabson, said the engineer who was suppose to service the pumps had been away for the past three months. However, the team decided to try the unused pumps and surprisingly it dispensed fuel until the PPPRA officials left.
Sources in area told The Guardian that the station was selling at N185 per litre and collects additional N250 on every 10 litres purchased by individuals. The manager, however, debunked the allegations, saying her attendants are not so stupid that they would sell above the pump price.
Advising filling station owners against hoarding, the Head, PPPRA Lagos Zone, Dr. Chinedu Nwonu, said the depots in Lagos now have adequate fuel to sell to all filling stations.“It is in their interest to stop because they can be at a disadvantage if they hoard and the product flood the market. We are monitoring actively and any station caught selling above the pump price would face sanctions,” he said.
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