The Nigerian Midstream and Downstream Petroleum Regulatory Authority (NMDPRA) on Friday sealed no fewer than four filing stations over issues bordering on irregularities and operating without valid licences.
The regulatory authority sealed the stations during a two-day routine inspection across the state.
NMDPRA officials visited over 50 filling stations during the exercise.
The regional coordinator of NMDPRA, George Ene-Ita, who spoke with journalists on the exercise in Calabar, said some other stations were also cautioned.
Represented by Effah Richard, Mr Ene-Ita explained that while one of the sealed stations operated without a licence, three others were sealed for under-dispensing products.
He said the exercise was embarked upon to ensure that operators follow the industry standard practice.
“As a regulatory authority, it is our responsibility that the users are protected from being fleeced by operators in any guise.
“As for those operating without a valid license in the state, they should understand that it is no longer business as usual in Cross River; this is so for various reasons, including environmental protection, the safety of lives and property and so on.
“It is a delicate industry, and it doesn’t mean that anyone with money can just open a facility anyhow without due process, hence the need for proper licensing,” he said.
The sealed filling stations are in Calabar South and Municipality Local Government Area of the state.