The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Warri Zonal Office, on Wednesday, said it has, in the last one week, effected the sealing of 15 erring petrol stations across Delta State.
The Warri Zonal Operations Controller, Mr Antai Asuquo, disclosed this to journalists shortly after a surveillance exercise carried out in Warri and environs.
Asuquo, who led a surveillance team on Wednesday to picket erring fuel stations also disclosed that two staffers of a petrol station were arrested in Warri on Tuesday for violating DPR’s seal.
The two arrested staffers will gain their freedom as well as the station unsealed after a fine of N1 million is paid, the controller noted.
The controller said that the surveillance team also visited two depots in Koko, Warri North Local Government on Wednesday.
According to him, the visit was sequel to complaints by marketers that they bought the product above the government-approved ex-depot price of N133. 28k per litre at the depots.
“We have sealed 15 erring filling stations in the last seven days for hoarding, over-pricing, and diversion of products. Two persons were arrested for violating DPR seal.
” Today, we visited depots to verify the claim by fuel marketers that they buy product above the government approved ex-depot price but the depot owners said they sell at the approve ex-depot price.
“We appeal to them to sell at the government approved price as the product was provided to them by the government,
“We expect that they will sustain that approved price so that it will be reflected at the retail end as fuel consumers will buy at the approved pump price of N145 per litre.
“However, we expect that the situation will improve over time and the product will be available so that the hike in prices by marketers will come to an end.
“The station that was sanctioned today in Warri for diverting 38,000 litres of petroleum product will pay N200 per litre of the volume as punishment, “he said.
Asuquo assured that DPR would sustain the surveillance till the situation normalises, adding that two monitoring teams were on duty on weekdays.
He lauded the Department of State Service (DSS) for providing security for the task force has, however, advised marketers not to buy the product above the approved price.
Meanwhile, the pump price of PMS at various fuel stations across the state still oscillates between N230 and N250.