The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has advised the public against the patronage of petroleum products sold in yellow gallons at the lorry and on table-top as the quality of such products cannot be assured.
The NPA said it was illegal for any person or group of persons to sell petroleum products in gallons at the lorry stations saying, “NPA has not granted license to any individual or group of persons to sell petroleum products to consumers at the lorry station, that act is illegal.”
Mr Bashiru Natogma, the Upper West Regional Manager of the NPA, gave the advice in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Wa on efforts by the NPA to help curb the menace of the sale of adulterated petroleum products in the region.
He said aside from the quality assurance issues of such products, it would be difficult for the regulatory body to trace the source of such petroleum products in case of any eventuality.
Dr Hafiz Bin Salih, the Upper West Regional Minister, raised the concern about the smuggling of petroleum products and invasion of adulterated petroleum products in the region during a visit of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NPA to the region and stressed the need for urgent steps to arrest the menace.
The visit was to find out the extent of fuel smuggling and adulteration in the region, especially with reports coming out that there was fuel smuggling in the region.
Mr Natogma explained that the problem of the sale of adulterated petroleum products in the region had been solved saying, “Things are really under control compared to the initial time we came here.”
He indicated that regional offices had been opened throughout the country to check the problem of fuel smuggling and the importation of adulterated fuel from neighbouring countries.
“The strategies we put in place have really worked for us because complaints about adulteration, for the past six months, we have not heard of any complaint … and we are determined to do more”, he added.
After seven months of intervention by the NPA to curb the smuggling of petroleum products in the region, the GNA spoke with some consumers of petroleum products in Wa to find out the impact of those interventions.
Mr Ahmed Hissan Jimba, the Secretary of the Upper West Regional Combuu (tricycles) Drivers Association, told the GNA that the intervention of the NPA had saved their machine engines from destroying.
He explained that they used to patronise petroleum products sold in gallons, which could have a dire impact on the engines of their machines but that with the education they received from the NPA they had become conscious of the adulteration of such products.
Also, Mr Nuhu Mahama, the Industrial Relations Officer of the Ghana Road Transport Union (GPRTU) told the GNA that with the coming of the NPA in the region fuel smuggling was no longer a problem but the hike in prices of petroleum products by the various Oil Marketing Companies in the region.
He said the high cost of petroleum products in Ghana had led to the smuggling of those products from neighbouring countries into Ghana.