The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has warned consumers of petroleum to beware of fake and adulterated diesel in circulation.
The corporation raised the alarm in a statement in Abuja by its spokesperson, Kennie Obateru.
Mr Obateru said the alarm followed reports over the prevalence of low grade and contaminated diesel being offered at discounted prices in some parts of the country to consumers.
The Managing Director of NNPC Retail Limited, the products distribution subsidiary of the corporation, Billy Okoye, raised the alarm in a monitoring report issued in Abuja.
He admonished motorists and other consumers relying on diesel for their businesses to be wary of the off-spec products in circulation.
Mr Okoye urged Nigerians to be aware of the dangers associated with the low grade and contaminated diesel.
“Nigerians must beware of the dangers of using this contaminated product. It is harmful to machines and the environment,” he said. “The NNPC Retail Limited as a market leader considers it incumbent upon it to alert the general public on the existence of the harmful product in the market.”
The official said the NNPC ”was still investigating to find out those behind the contaminated product.”
“The NNPC Retail Limited deals only in premium, high-quality petroleum products in the interest of Nigerian motorists and other users. To be sure of the quality of products they buy, consumers should patronise NNPC stations nationwide,” he said.
He said as a deregulated product, diesel is also imported by other major and independent petroleum products marketers in the country.
The issue of adulterated petroleum products is not new to Nigerians.
Between 2010 and 2012, at the peak of the fuel subsidy regime in the country, petroleum products oozing awful odour were imported and distributed in the country by marketers who were desperate to justify their claims for subsidy payments.
In recent time, the proliferation of illegal refineries has increased the circulation of these adulterated products.