The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), Warri Zonal Office has sealed 28 additional petrol stations in the last nine days in Delta.

The Warri Zonal Operations Controller, Mr Antai Asuquo, disclosed this in an interview with newsmen on Wednesday in Warri.

Asuquo said the affected petrol stations were sanctioned over offences bordering on hoarding, over-pricing, under-dispensing and diversion of products.

Newsmen recalled that the regulatory agency had earlier sealed over 95 filling stations in the state over same offence.

The controller said the DPR would continue to intensify surveillance and ensure that marketers comply with government approved pump price of N145 per litre.

“Our officers go to the field almost everyday to monitor sales of petroleum products at filling stations across the state and in the process, defaulters are sanctioned in line with the DPR rules.

“Aside the first visit, we also revisit the stations to ensure that the marketers do not derail from the government approved pump price they claimed to have adhered to.

“ We also visit depot owners to advise them against selling to bulk buyers and third parties so that the independent marketers can have access to the product at the government approved ex-depot price of N133.28k per litre.

“However, there is an improvement in the fuel situation compared to before, many stations in Delta now have the product and some dispensing at the government approved price.

“In the last nine days, we have sanctioned over 28 stations over offences bordering on hoarding, over-pricing, under-dispensing and diversion of products and we will continue to do that until there is full compliance.

“We have also unsealed a sizeable number of filling stations that were earlier sealed for various offences after they have paid their fines,’’ he said.

Asuquo appealed to the public to always cooperate with, and help the DPR officials with useful information over sharp practices indulged by the petroleum marketers.

“Sometimes, the petroleum consumers do not help matters, they connive with marketers to deceive our officials that a particular station dispenses at N145, so it is to difficult seal such,’’ he said.

The controller advised petroleum marketers not to buy product if they knew they could not dispense at the government regulated pump price.

Newsmen report that the cost of buying fuel at filling stations in Warri and environs has reduced marginally.

The prices now hover between N170 and N190 per litres while major marketers like Rainoil, TOTAL and Matrix Energy Limited sell at between N143 and N145 per litre.

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