Business News of Wednesday, 1 November 2017
The Deputy Minister of Energy in charge of Petroleum, Hon. Dr. Mohammed Amin Adam has called on Metropolitan, Municipal & District Assemblies (MMDAs) to desist issuing permits to private developers who site their edifice near LPG stations.
Addressing a gathering at the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) safety campaign forum, Dr. Adam said the petroleum industry has been subjected to public ridicule following series of casualties recorded across the country amid the numerous gas and filling station explosions.
He bemoaned the situation where some filling station regulators place self-interest above the safety of persons and properties, this according to him has projected the petroleum industry as one of the most “insensitive” and “irresponsible” entities in the country.
“In spite of the dangers of poor safety and regulatory regimes, our regulators continue to allow special interest to undermine their enforcement of safety regulations, putting the lives of people and property on the line and consequently projecting the petroleum industry as most insensitive, irresponsible and only motivated by profit,” he said.
Dr. Adam tasked industry players to live up to expectations by setting up statutory policies to regulate the operation of its members thereby safeguarding the lives and properties of regulators.
He also urged stakeholders to sideline operators who fail to adhere to regulatory directives and safety standards.
“Industry players must leave up to their responsibility of protecting the very people who buy their product and patronize their services,” he advised.
“I would therefore like to encourage industry players to take the bold step of formulating industry safety standards through industry associations and begin to peer review each other and where necessary delete your peers who are not keeping to the standards you have set”, he added.
His remarks come on the back of the recent gas explosion at Atomic junction that has been met with a loud outcry from the general public urging government to intervene to bring an end to the numerous evitable disasters that have persistently hit the country.
This has ignited a huge debate among stakeholders on the siting of some gas filling stations with some questioning the duty of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for their veracity as an institution to safeguard human lives.
The alarming rate at which these accidents occur has necessitated the shutdown of several LPG operation centres across the country.