A total of 2,025 litres of illicit petroleum products concealed in yellow jelly cans, popularly known as ‘Kufuor gallons’ and kept in a commercial vehicle, have been impounded at Hamile in the Lambussie district of the Upper West Region.
A combined team of personnel from the Security Intelligence Directorate, Upper West Region’s office of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and the Ghana Armed forces on Tuesday impounded the vehicle loaded with illicit petroleum products.
Communications Manager of the NPA, Mohammed Abdul Kudus, in an exclusive interview with JoyNews stated that the products which were kept in 81 jelly cans and valued over 30,000 Ghana Cedis are suspected to be smuggled into the country from neighbouring Burkina Faso.
The vehicle with registration number UW-113-14 was spotted loaded with unwholesome products plying unapproved routes around the Hamile enclave.
”My information is that there has been a preliminary investigation where the various standards were measured to see whether the products were of good quality. It has shown that they were illegal and from a dubious source,” he revealed.
Mohammed Abdul Kudus urged the public to collaborate with the NPA and the security agencies in the fight against the proliferation of illegal products and their consumption.
”We can’t be everywhere and that is why we are telling them that as and when they have the information, they should let us know so that we can liaise with the appropriate security agencies to tackle it,” he stated.
For some time now, there have been complaints from dealers of petroleum products in the Upper West Region of the smuggling of unwholesome petroleum products into the region from neighbouring countries.
The vehicle and the illicit petroleum products have since been carted to the Number 10 Mechanized Aggrey barracks and impounded for further investigation. The driver is currently at large.
The influx of these illicit petroleum products into the region has resulted in low patronage and sales of petroleum products at fuel stations.
Due to stringent, efficient and strict monitoring measures put in place by the Upper West Region’s chapter of the National Petroleum Authority, unwholesome petroleum products are usually sold at lorry stations and at lower prices.
However, drivers who buy these cheaper unwholesome petroleum products have begun complaining about their engines developing faults after using them. Some commercial drivers have lauded the move by the NPA and the security intelligence; urging them not to rest on their oars.
Meanwhile, the Upper West Regional Manager of NPA, Bashiru Natogma, has cautioned petroleum consumers to desist from buying such products. He stated that the only approved place to patronize petroleum products are the fuel stations.
Mr Bashiru further cautioned drivers not to use their vehicles to cart illicit products because it is illegal and also puts the lives of the general public at risk.