The alleged adjustment of fuel pumps at some of the fuel filling stations in the country, with the sole aim of cheating the consumer, has been blamed on major players in the industry.
Information picked up by The Chronicle newspaper indicate that some of the fuel station managers have adjusted their fuel pumps, to enable them recoup the money stolen from them by the Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) and tanker owners and drivers.
The Chronicle gathered that though flow meters are used at the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) to measure petrol and other fuel products loaded into petrol tankers for onward distribution to the filling stations, the same standard, which is internationally recognized, is not applied when the fuel is being discharged at the filling stations.
The Chronicle was told that sometime back, the fuel station managers wrote a petition to the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), urging the latter to compel the OMCs to use flow meters when discharging the product at the retail unit, instead of the measurement bar they had adopted. The NPA, subsequently, wrote a memo to the OMCs about the complaints it had received, and urged the companies to resort to the use of flow meters. The OMCs reportedly wrote back to the NPA, indicating that they could not afford the cost of the flow meters, and that ended the matter, as the petroleum regulating body failed to compel the former to acquire the flow meters to eliminate the cheating the station managers were complaining of.
A source, which spoke to The Chronicle, argued that the OMCs were unwilling to acquire the flow meters, because they are benefiting from the petrol stolen from the station managers, and that acquiring the equipment would block their illegal source of income.
The source alleged that after the petrol or diesel had been loaded at TOR, the petrol tanker drivers are under obligation to drive to their main yard, apparently to siphon some of the fuel, before proceeding to the fuel stations to discharge the product.
Some of the fuel station managers who spoke to The Chronicle said though a seal is usually put on the tankers, after loading fuel at TOR, it is always left ajar, and that the proper locking of the seal is done after the tanker driver had visited the main yard of his employers.
These nefarious activities, The Chronicle was told, is causing the fuel station managers to lose between GH�3,000 and GH�4,000 per 36,000 litres of petrol, which cost GH�60,000.
Despite this naked robbery, the fuel station managers have remained quiet, for fear of being victimized by the OMCs.
According to the source, any fuel station manager who dares protest against the illegal siphoning of the fuel, will have his or her station taken away from him, and assigned a new station that is not well patronized.
Source: The Chronicle
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