*As NSCDC arrest 10
Following move geared towards mitigating gas explosion across the nation, and addressing economy leakages, the Department of Petroleum Resources, DPR, has shutdown seven Liquefied Petroleum Gas, LPG, plants, popularly known as cooking gas in Lagos.
This is even as the Nigerian Security and Civil Defense Corps, NSCDC, arrested ten employees of the sealed gas plants.
iBrandTV gathered that the regulatory agency sealed the plant over noncompliance, illegal operating license, plants stationed under high tension electrical wire, proximity to residential building, amongst others.
The sealed plants includes, Banner gas, Lekki, Darison gas plant, Elegushi, Spade Energy Limited and Polax Gas, both in Gbagada, Pivot Cooking Gas Bariga, Auto Gas, amongst others.
Speaking on the sideline of the surveillance by the DPR, the Zonal Operations Controller, Lagos, of the department, Mr Ayorinde Cardoso, noted that the LPG plants were shut down for operating under high tension electrical installations, some facilities did not meet the minimum 15 meters distance required for such operations, while others for operating without a valid license.
According to him, “We are here on surveillance assignment because the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, has declared this year as the Year of Gas.
“So, we want to make sure that all operators in this line of business abide by the rules and regulations. We do not want the market to be compromised with sharp practices, and that is why we are stepping up surveillance.
READ ALSO: Osun: DPR shuts down 15 illegal gas stations
“DPR will not allow LPG retailers to operate under unsafe conditions, to forestall any disastrous consequence. We are collaborating with the NSCDC to enforce compliance with the closure order.”
While commenting on the recent inauguration of the Minimum Industry Safety Training for Downstream Operations, MISTDO, programme, Cardoso stated that the agency is committed to improving safety in the oil and gas industry.
“MISTDO is coming on board to encourage the licensed operators to give basic training to their employees, and we still monitor these licensed facilities to ensure compliance. We want to deepen the LPG sector, and to do that, we must increase our surveillance, to weed out the illegal operators,” he added.
On his part, NSCDC, Lagos State Commandant, Mr. Fasiu Adeyinka, said the corps was partnering DPR to bring sanity to the LPG sector.
“We urge Nigerians to assist the agency in reporting illegal facilities operating within their areas, to avert tragedies caused by gas explosions,” Adeyinka said.