The Anambra State Command of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, NSCDC, on Tuesday warned that it will apprehend filling station owners who are taking undue advantage of the artificial scarcity of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly called fuel, to hike the price of the product thereby worsening the current situation in the state.
TNC correspondent Kenechukwu Ofomah who went round most filling stations in the state, reports that a litre of fuel now sells for between N195 to N220 in major cities of Awka, Onitsha and Nnewi.
Some other stations which are not selling along the line, were not dispensing.
The State Commandant of the NSCDC, Everestus Obiyo after his visit to most filling stations, observed that they were dispensing above the recommended pump price.
Obiyo charged members of the public to furnish the command with credible information on the activities of errant marketers, noting that NSCDC is ready to ensure that filling stations with the commodity sell at the government approved price.
He said the State Command in line with the directive of Dr. Ahmed Abubakar Audi, the Commandant General of NSCDC, to State Commandants, has deployed personnel mostly Anti-Vandalism Squad, to filling stations.
“This is to maintain orderliness, monitor compliance with government-approved rates as well as stop visible and perceived sharp practices observed during this supervision and monitoring of some filling stations in the State,” he said.
The team led by the Head of Anti Vandalism Squad, Assistant Commandant Dennis Reuben it was gathered, visited several filling stations in Awka metropolis, to monitor the compliance of sale of the commodity at the approved price, cautioned them against hiking the price and ensured that the product is sold to motorists instead of hoarding it.
Besides the astronomical rise in price in some of the filling stations visited, the entourage noticed that most filling stations were shortchanging customers through under-dispensing and product hoarding.
While speaking about his experience during the exercise, ACC Reuben Dennis wondered why operators of filling stations still chose to sabotage the government and inflict pain on consumers.
He warmed erring filling stations who are still selling above the recommended pump price or hoarding the products thereby causing artificial scarcity to revert or risk being arrested and dealt with according to the law.