The Department of Petroleum Resources has again sealed off three petrol stations in Odukpani Local Government Area of Cross River State for selling Premium Motor Spirit product at N150 per litre against the government approved price of N145 per litre.
The three affected stations had earlier been sealed off by the DPR, but the management of the stations violated the seal order and continued selling the product to customers at N150 per litre.
DPR Operations Controller in Cross River, Mr Bassey Nkanga, who led his team on an intensified surveillance on fuel stations across the state, said the stations were sealed off again for violating the seal order of the DPR.
Nkanga expressed dissatisfaction with the hike in price of PMS at the affected stations, adding that they had no reason to hike the price when some stations were selling the product at N143, N144 and N145 per litre.
Southern City News learnt on Thursday that the stations would have to pay a fine of N1m each for violating the seal order.
The operations controller explained that the intensified surveillance was with a view to ensuring that marketers do not increase pump price ahead of the Yuletide period.
He said, “Any marketer that is caught cheating in any form, either selling above government price or adjusting the metre will be sanctioned severely.
“We have been doing this in the past two weeks and already some marketers have been sanctioned. If you have been a serial violator of the regulations, if you pay the fine; it is not a guarantee that we will unseal your station for business to commence immediately.
“The level of stability in the sector is nearly 100 per cent especially in Cross River Central and South. We will try our best to sustain this tempo of surveillance activities in all outlets.
“The initiative is a routine exercise. We are only intensifying the monitoring and surveillance activities to ensure that marketers do not take undue advantage of the Yuletide period to hike the price.”