NPA warns against illegal petroleum trade at Aflao border

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, has said illegal petroleum fuel trade at the Aflao border is a threat to revenue mobilisation efforts of the government.

Dr Abdul-Hamid said this when he led management of the authority to tour the Aflao border to observe for himself some illegal activities on the border crossing.

According to Dr Abdul-Hamid the NPA had not licensed any importer to bring fuel through the Aflao border and urged the border officers to stop importation of petroleum products by road.

“The NPA is an agency responsible for monitoring downstream petroleum industry, and that combating fuel activities was central to activitiesthe authority does,” he stated.

Dr Abdul-Hamid said Ghana was the only country in the subregion that consumes the highest quality of petroleum products, and that it was important to maintain such a feat.

 He, therefore, urged security officials at the Aflao border to tackle these activities to the barest minimum.

The chairman of the Aflao Border Security Committee, MajeedAmandi, said unapproved entry points and routes on the Ghana-Togo borders were the reason for criminal activities including fuel smuggling.

MrAmandi, who is also an Assistant Commissioner of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority – Aflao Collection, indicated that the service was fighting the menace together with other security agencies as well as the NPA.

He said in a bid to fight the menace, security patrols had been intensified, adding that they have observed that the perpetrators of the illegality operate at midnight in order to avoid being caught.

Describing them as daring, MrAmanda said they always found their way into the country’s borders and offload unwholesome petroleum products onto the Ghanaian market.

He said this was also as a result of the unavailability of special boats for patrols on the sea at night.

The chairman of the Aflao Border Security Committee noted that border security agencies were in need of working tools to combat the illicit trade.

The commander called on members of the border security committee and management to be alert on such illegal activities, and gave the assurance that Customs would liaise with the agencies to ensure the menace was dealt with, and handover wrongdoers to the appropriate authorities.

The Volta Regional Manager of the NPA, Mr Rasheed Dauda, appreciated the collaboration with the security agencies at Aflao, and pledged to work closely with them to arrest the criminals.

BY TIMES REPORTER

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