Wole Balogun, Ado Ekiti
The Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) has threatened to begin a clampdown on petrol dealers hoarding or diverting the product in Ekiti State on Monday.
The NDCDC, Ekiti command, said it would not allow those he described as unscrupulous dealers to create artificial scarcity in the state over non-existent anticipation that the official pump price might be increased.
Governor Kayode Fayemi on Friday issued similar threat against some petrol dealers found to be hoarding fuel whose action compelled motorists to engage in panic buying since Friday.
The development had also caused of long queues in filling stations to resurface across the state and hike in the pump price in some stations to as high as N160 per litre.
Speaking with journalists in Ado Ekiti on Sunday, the command’s commandant, Mr. Solomon Iyamu, said he had instructed anti- vandal operatives to commence random checks on petrol stations and arrest those hoarding the product and subjecting people to hardship.
Iyamu, who spoke through the command’s Public Relations Officer, Tolu Afolabi, added that the operation would begin at 8am on Monday.
“We are starting the operation on Monday and those sabotaging the system will be arrested and brought to justice.
“We realised that long queues and artificial scarcity have been created by some petrol dealers; we are ready to address the issue.
“If we get to your petrol station, and we find out that it has as much as 10,000 litres of petrol in its pits but the dealer is not selling, then he is liable and such person will face the law.
“We learnt from good authorities that a very high number of our petrol stations are now hoarding the product. Some are also selling above N145 per litre; these are the issues we will tackle squarely,” he stated.
The NDCDC boss urged motorists to offer useful information to the command to help his men and officers in carrying out the operation.
He promised that the command would also strengthen its operation to prevent those who could divert products meant for Ekiti to another state, thereby creating scarcity in the system.