Fuel diversion: NPA to clamp down on transporters
The National Petroleum Authority (NPA), has served notice that it will ban transporters whose fuel tankers will be caught engaging in fuel diversion.
According to the NPA, it has been lenient in the past but will leave no room for such illegality to fester.
Speaking during a visit to the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation depot in Kumasi in the Ashanti Region, Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, chief executive officer of the NPA said as part of his primary objective to sanitize the system, transporters found in engaging in fuel diversion will be banned indefinitely.
He indicated that the authority has installed tracking devices and seals on tankers that transport fuel from various depots across the country to clamp down on the illegal activity
“These loadings are done with the aid of technology and a digitalized platform. When they load, the BRV is sealed but when people leave the BOST depot, instead of them going straight to wherever they’re supposed to offload the products, they’ll go to an authorized yard, small yards dotted around the towns where they’ll then go to try to tamper with the seal.”
Dr Abdul-Hamid said, “What we need to do is to do real-time monitoring, already we have a monitoring system. We have an electronic cargo tracking system that tracks the movement of the vehicle but the result is often not apt.”
“…So, our next target is to do real-time monitoring and by real-time monitoring and action, immediately we see on the screen that this BRV is diverted, we should be able to see in real-time that he’s diverting his cause and going to the bush so we can call the nearest police station.
…We have also told the tanker owners that if your tanker is involved in tampering or a diversion, we’re going to ban your tanker forever for carrying petroleum products in our country,” he stated.
Also, Dr Abdul-Hamid said the state security is investigating the recent explosion at Kaase which involved a fuel tanker purported to be engaged in fuel Siphoning and would soon come out with the details.
Help us fight fuel siphoning
Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid has, however, appealed to the executives of the Tanker Drivers Union at the Buipe Depot Branch to help fight the tampering of seals on tankers and the siphoning of fuel.
To ensure the integrity of petroleum products on Bulk Road Vehicles (Tankers), the NPA has installed seals on all licensed tankers.
The NPA boss said there are more than 15 incidents of seal tampering on daily basis, a situation he said was very worrying.
Interacting with executives of the union in Buipe as part of his five-region tour of petroleum installations and other state institutions, Dr Abdul-Hamid said not only was the siphoning of fuel a loss to the government but it also endangered the lives and properties of Ghanaians by the fires that sometimes resulted from such activities.