29 April 2016
A truck belonging to Virgin Coast Limited carrying 40,000 litres of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) has reportedly been impounded by the Department of Petroleum Resources and the Cross River State Task Force on Petroleum.
The truck was heading to the Republic of Cameroun, when it was halted by a team set up in Cross River State’s Ministry of Petroleum working in collaboration with security agencies and the DPR.
From a briefing with reporters yesterday by the DPR Controller of Operations for Cross River and Akwa Ibom states, Bassey Nkanga, it was gathered that the Nigerian Army 13 Brigade in Akim Barracks Calabar diverted the vehicle meant to supply the product to the NNPC retail outlet in Awi, Akamkpa Local Council of Cross River State.
“It was diverted and caught in Ikang-Bakassi, a border town to the Republic of Cameroon and brought to 13 Brigade Nigerian Army in its custody.
“We are going back to the station at Akamkpa to put a seal and the marketer is going to be sanctioned adequately,” Nkanga said.
The Petroleum Department has sealed 24 filling stations in the two states for involving in illegal activities. It had been disclosed that 80 percent of the product from Cross River and Akwa Ibom were being diverted to the Niger Republic and Chad.
However, the agency said Nigeria would need about 1,000,000 barrels per day effective installed capacity to tackle the shortfall in refining capacity of 554,000 bpd.
Nkanga explained, “we have sealed 24 filling stations both in Akwa Ibom and Cross River. We also sanctioned them for no less than 30 days at the minimum.
“If you go to Northern Cross River, in particular, there are stations that are still under DPR seals. We have sealed them for more than 90 days because they have refused to come and pay the fine and we don’t allow them to operate.”