The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) has read riot acts to major marketers of petroleum products throughout the country saying that it was prepared to tightening the noose on them in 2010 and also insist on early renewal of their licenses for the coming year.
The decision to be stricter was conveyed to the marketers last week in Lagos at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) between the DPR and the marketers.
Acting Director of DPR, Mr. Billy Agha, who told the gathering of marketers of the impending action also added that irrespective of government’s deregulation policy, the desire of the agency was to ensure the success of the downstream.
According to him, successive management of DPR had ensured that the interactions between the Department and the six major marketers were held yearly to enhance better understanding between the apex regulator and the operators.
The meeting with marketers also coincided with the alert from DPR’s Lagos Zonal Controller, Mr. Gbenga Koku to the effect that DPR would begin the normal process of renewal of licences from October 2009 for 2010/2011 licensing period.
He consequently advised them to submit all applications for renewal early enough so as to facilitate early issuance of licences. He also warned that marketers who fail to renew their licences by February 29, 2010 will have their operations suspended.
The DPR boss lamented that in spite of the agency’s repeated announcement of schedule for submission, many marketers still ignore warning and engage in late submission of renewal applications thereby distorting DPR’s programmes for the year.
He warned that with effect from 2010, construction of filling stations could only be done by DPR accredited civil contractors, adding that oil and gas equipment suppliers as well as tank fabricating contractors must also be accredited by the agency.
Mr Agha, who was represented by a top official of the agency, Alhaji Mohammed Abbas, pointed out that one of the successes recorded by the forum was the reduction in the time it takes to issue a permit or licence and the elimination of cases of missing files.
He said “let us bear in mind the type of success we seek to achieve in the sector. Success would have been reached with meeting objectives such as excellence in transparency and accountability, avoidance of things such as wastages and delays in all processes and issuances of licenses and permits, regularity in availability of products and an environment that encourages growth of essential supportive services for the proper and profitable running of all sections of the industry. The over all ultimate aim that must be achieved is improved service delivery that is beneficial to the investor/marketer, the government, Nigeria and Nigerians and an oil industry that will serve as a point of reference to other countries and industries.”