The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has suspended the importation permit of six petrol depots in Lagos and Calabar for selling Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), otherwise called petrol, above the official ex-depot price of N77.66 per litre.
The agency, in a circular with reference number PI/PAD/25/Vol.1/360 of December 11, 2015, stated that the importation permit of the six depots had been suspended for three months for selling PMS above the stipulated official price of N77.66. It cited its powers under the Petroleum Control Act of 1967 and the Petroleum Act of 1969 (as amended).
In addition to the suspension, the affected depots will also pay a fine of N10 million each to the regulatory agency.
The agency listed the affected depots to include: Samon Petroleum, Calabar; Fynefield Petroleum, Calabar; Staillonaire Petroleum, Lagos; Folawiyo Petroleum, Lagos; Sahara Petroleum, Lagos; and Capital Oil, Lagos.
Folawiyo was sanctioned for allowing Sahara Petroleum to use its depot to breach the stipulated price.
The level of involvement of Capital Oil was not clear as the company does not import petrol but is only used by the Pipeline Products and Marketing Company (PPMC), a subsidiary of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and other marketers to sell their imported products.
“PPPRA has been advised to revoke the companies’ allocation, while PPMC has been informed not to allocate PMS to the erring depots during their period of suspension,” said the agency.
Department of State Services (DSS) and Economic and the Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in a renewed effort to arrest diversion of petroleum products by some unscrupulous marketers.
It was gathered that despite the threat, the marketers still divert petrol allocated to them by the PPMC at official ex-depot price of N77.60 and sell to other marketers at between N115.50 and N118 per litre.
Maritime First reports that marketers with NNPC tickets buy the product at N77.60 per litre but instead of loading the product to their various filling stations, they hawk the tickets to other marketers, who do not have direct allocation from the corporation.
To check profiteering by retail outlets, the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu had directed DPR to give out to members of the public for free, petrol that is found to be hoarded in any filling station.