HONE SIAME, Lusaka
THE Energy Regulation Board (ERB) has fined six fuel companies a total of K108,000 for selling contaminated fuel, and breaching various licence conditions.
ERB consumer and public affairs director Agness Phiri said in a statement yesterday that the decision to punish erring companies is aimed at safeguarding life and property by ensuring players strictly comply with safety regulations.
Mrs Phiri named the erring companies as Mount Meru Petroleum, Ogaz Zambia Limited, Refuel Petroleum Corporation Limited, Kobil Zambia Limited, Sabot Limited and Alpha Enterprise Limited.
She said Mount Meru Petroleum has been fined K36,000, with Ogaz Zambia Limited and Refuel Petroleum Corporation Limited being fined K18,000 each, while Kobil Zambia Limited, Sabot Limited and Alpha Enterprise Limited have been fined K12,000 each.
“Kobil Zambia Limited was charged for selling contaminated fuel at two of its Kitwe filling stations contrary to guidelines and licence conditions which demand that product quality should be assessed before being offloaded for sale to the public.
“A licence is expected to maintain and regularly update its record of quality checks conducted for each consignment received. Regrettably, Kobil failed to adhere to both requirements resulting in contamination at its Zambia Way and Oxford Filling stations in Kitwe,” Mrs Phiri said.
She said ERB will ensure all energy companies found wanting of breaching various conditions, including the unauthorised sale of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG), are punished.
She said investigations into the Kobil Zambia Limited matter revealed that petrol was adulterated with diesel and kerosene.
“Stakeholders and the public are encouraged to report energy-related accidents, incidents and complaints to the ERB on the toll-free line 8484,” she said.
Mrs Phiri said Mount Meru Petroleum Zambia and Ogaz Zambia Limited were fined for selling LPG without a licence, while Sabot and Alpha Enterprises failed to attain the compliance benchmark score of 85 percent.
“Sabot sites in Mpika and Kasama scored 74 percent and 84 percent, respectively, while the Alpha site in Chinsali was also below the set target.
“Refuel Petroleum was cited for selling fuel at Vuma filling station in Sesheke using an expired licence issued to another company. Refuel has not been licensed by ERB to operate a filling station,” he said.
She said the ERB will continue conducting regular inspections.