DPR seals off 12 filling Stations for under dispensing in Lokoja
By John Akubo,
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) in Kogi State yesterday wielded its big hammer as it sealed off 12 filling stations for under dispensing the premium motor spirit to unsuspecting members of the public in the State capital, Lokoja.
The NNPC filling station at phase 1 and in Gadumo were among the stations found wanting hence they were sealed off along with Dokkailiru at the Ganaja junction which was found to be duping customers almost 2 litters for every 10 liters.
Others are Yisab oil and gas, DIATTO filling Station at Ganaja junction, Heroes oil limited at zone 8 round about and Abiodun and Associate at phase1.
Others are Royal Confluence Oil and gas and NMPC station.
The DPR which was on routine surveillance uncovered shady dealings by most of the petroleum marketers whose filling stations were visited in the State capital as their meters were found to have been adjusted to dispense the commodity less of the meter reading thereby ripping off the customers of their hard earned money.
DPR State Controller, Engr. Amos Jokodola, who led the surveillance team said the objective of the exercise was to ensure that licensed filling stations sell fuel at the correct quantity and the correct quality in the sense of specification.
“I am not satisfied with today’s exercise because majority of the stations failed. “They were under dispensing to the public and they are going to pay the penalty and we will force them to comply with selling the correct quantity. The pumps that were found to be under delivering would have to be rectified by the company’s technicians and ensure that they deliver 10 liters for 10 liters.”
He reiterated that thereafter they will pay penalty of N100, 000 per pump for defaulters.
“After the payment our engineers would go back again and measure to ensure the pumps are delivering 10litres for 10 litres before such marketers are allowed to resume sales of such products to the general public
“We do this surveillance weekly, today we are in Lokoja with two teams going to different directions, tomorrow we would go to another Local Government; Yagba West or we go to Ankpa to cover that area and it is meant for the entire State.”
On the supply of fuel he said the situation is satisfactory adding that they have been getting enough of the commodities as there is no scarcity.
He admonished the general public to report any marketer selling above the pump price assuring that he would mobilize his officers to the company.
Jokodola adviced the marketers to abide by the law by selling the Correct quantity otherwise the station would be sealed off. “We are not going to allow the marketers to cheat the public and some of them are saboteurs, it is our statutory responsibility for us to monitor these licensed outfits to make sure they comply with the conditions under which they were licensed.”
Trouble looms for SAIPEM over breach of Local Content laws, procurement irregularities
Saipem Contracting Nigeria Limited may be tredding on slippery grounds over its processes for awarding contracts on the NLNG Train 7 (T7) project which contravenes Local Content laws.
The Train 7 project is a $10billion gas project owned by the Nigerian Liquid and Natural Gas Company (NLNG) is expected to boost the Nation’s gas capacity by 35%
At the ground breaking event conducted by President Muhammad Buhari in July this year, he stated that the project is expected to create over 12000 direct and 1.2million indirect jobs, with millions of dollars’ worth of activities and contracts within the Train 7 project, executed by Nigerians.
However, information at hand suggests that 3months into the project, the National Assembly is in receipt of several petitions alleging how Saipem, an Italian company, who is the principal partner in the delivery of the project, has technically excluded qualified Nigerian companies in the bidding and award process of contracts, which local content laws has deliberately reserved for Nigerians. It was further gathered that the National Assembly has commenced investigations into the veracity of the allegations against the Company. Several efforts to ascertain the exact contents of the petitions or identity the petitioners proved abortive
Ajaokuta Steel to come alive as Russia promises to renew plant, build new ones
*** to deploy artificial intelligence
Hope for early resuscitation of the Ajaokuta Steel Complex has been renewed as the Russian Ambassador-at-Large, Oleg Ozerov, has given the assurance that investors from his country will turn around the fortunes of the project that has become a mirage.
It would be recalled that late Shehu Shagari and Leonid Brezhnev led Nigeria and Russia when the two countries first started to build the Ajaokuta steel rolling mill in 1979.
In October 2018 almost forty years later, Nigeria returned to the bilateral agreement with Russia to resuscitate the now derelict steel factory complex.
The accord to revive the Ajaokuta steel project was reached during a meeting between Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Russia.
However, two years after there seem to be some inaction on the part of the Nigerian Government in sustaining that bilateral agreement.
Ozerov who is also an Envoy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation and Head of the Secretariat of Russia-Africa Partnership Forum spoke on Tuesday after the innauguration of the Nigeria-Russia Chamber of Commerce ( NRCCI)at the Trabscorp Hilton said,
“You have a big project like Ajaokuta I think it is our duty to restart the project, to restore production, to renew this plant and at the same time we could build a lot of new plants and new cooperation in different fields not only in oil and gas..
Ozerov said his country is ready to provide lots of higher technology, IT, artificial intelligence and so on.
The ambassador said they have competent technocrats that will deploy a new technology called smart city that utilizes supper computers to integrate transport, security and all other aspects in an integrated network
“For example Moscow is one of the cities in the world that is proposing a new technology named Smart City, it means how to organize a city using supper computers to organize the transport, security in the city.”
All those technology he said they are ready to provide
“We have in Nigeria good partners
We think that the work of the Chamber of Commerce under the direction of the President would be very successful because you have very active people who are ready to work and we have very modern and very competent people in Russia who are ready to build the economy of your country.”
“I will like to assure you that we in Russia we have a lot of Companies, a lot of business partners who are ready now to build sustainable and strategic cooperation with your wonderful country. Your country is a very ponderful partner in the African continent.”
According to him, Two years earlier, there was the Russian-African forum which kickstarted the new relationship and the second one will be in Nigeria here.
“We have not defined the venue but it would be defined through collaboration with our African Partners.
“Where we hold the forum is not important what is important is the content of our relationship, how we build the relationship.
“I will like to state very categorically that Nigerians are enthusiastic peolle, I find a very good atmosphere, and readiness, openness and seriousness to build a relationship with Russia
“I am happy to see Nigerians full of energy ready to develop the relationship. Believe me we share a lot in common, we are emotional like you, we have a lot of energy and we need each other because you have what need and we have what you need.
“I did not come a alone but with a retinue of business delegation, Association of Economic Cooperation with African countries which was established with African countries and it is made up of the biggest Russian Companies who are ready to provide competent technologies you need in Nigeria.
“With these we can build a very fruitful cooperation based on mutual trust and competent. We see here a lot of competent businessmen ready to invest and work with Russia.
“The potential of our relationship is bigger than current level of trade investment and so on.
Former Senate President, SenatorBikola Saraki said the chamber is coming late so it has a lot to do to catch up but he said there is hope with the kind of President in Obiora and the commitment of the Russian Embassy.” I see that commitment just like the President Noted, the hunger, the desire for collaboration and business working relationship is evident in the turn out
. Once you have Chamber of Commerce and Industry, it increases trade and business partnership and it is better for the country at large.
” I speak from Experience, I was in Russia in 2016 as a guest of the President of the Russian Conferderation Council which is the equivalent of the upper chamber, I saw from there that a lot of the Russian Companies were desiriiua to Co to Nigeria and do business.
” I am happy that you are here now and this chamber is established because Nigeria needs this kind of platform to create opportunities for business, collaboration setup.
We have a large market , we have a lot of entrepreneurs in Nigeria.
I think this will go a long way, we desperately need foreign direct investment to be able to provide employment and opportunities.
President of NRCCI, Obiora Okonkwo, said the innauguratiom is an Epoch making event adding that he is happy with the enthusiasm.
Obiora who is the candidate of the Zenith Labour Party for the forthcoming Anambra Govwrnorship election said if he is elected he will bring Russians to develop infrastructure in the State exclusively
“They are interested in doing Surface rail track, and you know that railway is a prerogative of the Federal Government
“Russia is ready to open up infrastructure for Anambra State, it is good for us”
FCT-IRS moves to harmonise taxes, levies to address double taxation
The Federal Capital Territory-Internal Revenue Service (FCT-IRS) has convened a stakeholders meeting to harmonise taxes and levies to address issue of multiple taxation in FCT.
The Executive Chairman of the FCT-IRS, Mr Abdullahi Attah at the stakeholders retreat in Lagos on Tuesday said the harmonisation of taxes and levies would help boost revenue generation in the territory.
The retreat was themed “Towards a Harmonised Revenue Management Framework in the FCT”.
Attah explained that his agency could not continue to work in silos hence decided to reach out to all stakeholders and embrace a new way and approach of working to achieve their shared objectives.
He said the need for harmonised systems, structures, processes and procedures in the territory could never be over emphasised.
“When the issue of harmonised systems or a framework is discussed in the FCT, there is usually some concern about what is sought to be achieved.
“The Area Councils, as we know are autonomous and self-governing, however, we all form part of the FCT administration, with a focus on providing services to indigenes and residents of the territory.
“The issue therefore is how best to work together within the existing governance system in the FCT and ensure that we are able to pool resources, utilise existing systems, knowhow and even data to enable us maximise the revenue generation potentials of the FCTIRS.
“In doing this, we do not believe that any one organisation within the FCT administration has all the information and knowledge, but if we work together, then we will improve collaboration, exchange of information and subsequently enhance our ability to improve revenue generation and management within the FCT” he explained.
In his remark, the FCT Minister, Alhaji Muhammad Bello said the FCTA was aware of challenges associated with claims over rights of revenue collection in the territory and attendant issues of multiple taxation, and this greatly impacted adversely on the ease of doing business.
Represented by FCT Permanent Secretary, Mr Olusade Adesola, Bello said this multiple taxation was capable of eroding confidence and builds discouragement instead of the other way round.
According to him, the task before the participants in this retreat is simple but very essential and esteemed: efficient collection and effective management of our internal revenue.
“We are all aware of the challenges associated with claims over rights of revenue collection in the FCT and attendant issues of multiple taxation.
“And this greatly impacts adversely on our ease of doing business because it erodes confidence and builds discouragement instead of the other way round.
“Several meetings have been conducted in this regard, and several decisions have been reached but we are not there yet. If we were home and dry on this knotty issue, we won’t be here, am I right?
“I am sure our Area Council Chairmen or their representatives and other stakeholders are also very concerned about this, and on this page in this matter.
“I therefore strongly urge us to make judicious use of this trip to Lagos. Let posterity be kind to us, and remember us for bringing lasting solutions to this lingering problem.
“We must work out a mutually acceptable mechanisms that is foolproof, such that can block all loopholes in the collection of our huge revenue resources. Let us also look into ways we can expand our revenue base in fallow areas” the minister said. (NAN)
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