The Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR), on Wednesday sealed off two illegal gas stations in Ewet Housing Estate and Ukana Offot in Uyo, Akwa Ibom.
The Operations Controller of DPR in Akwa Ibom, Mr Tamunoiminabo Kingsley-Sundaye, disclosed this to newsmen in Uyo.
He expressed displeasure that the gas stations were located at private residences with holes connecting to cylinders at the back of the houses.
According to him, they are lethal weapons with potential to claim lives when they explode.
“We have sealed up (off) those facilities, we will not end up there, and we will write a letter to the appropriate authorities.
“We will write to the state fire service, Uyo Municipal, DSS and Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and the Police to put eyes on the facilities.
Kingsley-Sundaye expressed surprise that some people could set up such facilities that were capable of wiping off a whole street.
He warned the operators of the illegal businesses that were 3.2km or seven minutes drive from each other to desist from carrying on with the illegal businesses and dismantle the facilities.
Kingsley-Sundaye said that the department would revisit the sealed off premises and arrest anyone found within the facilities.
“If they continue, we will effect arrest and prosecute them accordingly.
“This morning we got a report that in two places in Uyo, there are people already breaking the law by establishing facilities that are not allowed, recognised or approved.
“They are building up cylinders in residential areas and piped outside with hose dispensing to the public,” he said.
He noted that the facilities had no engineering standard and could never be approved by DPR.
“It has a big safety fault and gap and if allowed to stay, the neigbourhood and the entire people within the area are in danger.
“This breaks the known laws and standards, and guidelines in Nigeria and we will not allow it to stay,” Kingsley-Sundaye said.
He advised those plotting to do such illegal business to desist.
He said that DPR would not approve an illegal establishment capable of wiping off a whole community, adding that if the agency had approved the facilities, it would not have been there to seal off the business premises.
Mr Basil Akpan, the Manager at Duk Gas, claimed that the gas facility had been cleared by DPR and expressed surprise that the agency could seal off the place.