The Federal Government has stipulated new security measures for operators of fuel depots across the country.
The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) at a recent meeting with depot owners directed that proprietors should henceforth provide and deploy surveillance equipment as well as bomb detectors and trained security staff in their installations.
The agency said current security measures at many fuel depots across the country focussed mainly on theft prevention and needed to be stepped up, in view of the prevailing insecurity, including the Boko Haram insurgency.
Oliver Okparaojiako, who is the head of downstream in the DPR, said taking cognisance of the present challenge in the country, depots are strongly advised to reinforce access control of both vehicular and human traffic into their facilities.
Okparaojiako added, “Enhanced screening through use of electronic gadgets has been recommended at all depots. There is need for enhanced control of trucks in and around the depot for safety”.
The regulatory agency said that depot owners should provide trained security personnel that could be proactive in dealing with security threats. It stated further that the Close Circuit Television located in the depots do not cover the access roads around them, and advised that this needs to be applied in such a way as to cover a much wider area.
It has also advised that all trucks entering the depots should do so without truck boys, in order to minimise security risks.
Reiterating the seriousness that government attaches to security at the depots, Chioma Njoku, Zonal operations controller of the agency said: “The Federal, states and local governments have continued to sensitise all Nigerians to be security conscious. The recent incident at one of the product depots and another close to a gas depot should be a wake-up call for all depot operators to set up security processes and procedures within their areas of operations, and perhaps synergise with one another as they are located in close cluster”.
Njoku warned the depot operators not to supply substandard products to the public.
The Zonal operation Controller who presided over the meeting with depot owners urged importers of petroleum products to ensure that products imported into the country always meet approved specifications.