Story by Kayode Augustine
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) on Thursday sealed a gas plant located at Gas line road in Magboro, Ogun, for allegedly operating illegally.
Mrs. Muinat Bello-Zagi, the Operations Controller, Abeokuta Field Office, DPR, who led the team, also apprehended three suspects with the help of the men of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC).
Bello-Zagi vowed that the owner of the plant and others running illegal gas plants in any part of the state would be arrested and prosecuted.
She said: “If you look behind me, you’ll see a padlock. We had visited this facility twice and sealed it; we padlocked it but when we got here now, we noticed that he didn’t tamper with our padlock; rather, he created another entrance that was not there previously.
“That is why we are here again and we have sealed the place and going to prosecute him. We have said earlier that anyone caught operating illegally will be sanctioned and prosecuted and that is what we are going to do with this plant owner.’’
Meanwhile, the officials of the DPR met with the members of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) at the Mosimi depot.
The DPR officials, led by Bello-Zagi, said that the meeting was aimed at affirming the relationship existing between the department and the petroleum marketers.
She urged the petroleum marketers to always adhere to the regulations guiding the sale of petroleum products in the country.
“IPMAN is one of our major stakeholders and we appreciate and respect them a lot. The purpose of the meeting today (Thursday) is to remind ourselves and remind them of some of our regulations.
“They have been complying but there is no perfect institution and there are some areas that need improvement and that is what we have discussed and they have promised to cooperate with us,” she said.
Responding, the Vice Chairman of IPMAN, Fatai Soewu, assured the DPR officials that the association would continue to appeal to its members to obey lay down rules and regulations.
Soewu, however, pleaded with the Federal Government to urgently address the issue of multiple- taxation which he said was affecting businesses of IPMAN members negatively..
He further urged the government to look into ways of having a unified taxation system.
Soewu also called on the government to urgently repair the Ikorodu/Sagamu road leading to the depot and ensure availability of petroleum products at the facility