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Stop fuel smuggling at Aflao border – NPA Boss to Custom officers

Dr. Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, the Chief Executive of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), has revealed that illicit fuel trade operations are rampant along the Aflao border.

He said that the NPA has not given any importer permission to carry fuel across the Aflao border, and he asked  border officers to halt petroleum goods from being imported by road.

Dr. Abdul-Hamid made the remarks while leading the Authority’s management on visit to the Aflao border to  familiarize himself with illicit operations there.

The NPA Boss said combating fuel smuggling is still a menace that denies the government of the right revenue. “The NPA is an agency responsible for monitoring downstream petroleum industry, and that combating fuel activities is central to what the Authority does” he emphasized.

Ghana is the only country in the sub region that consumes the best quality of fuel, according to Dr. Abdul-Hamid, and it is important to maintain this distinction. As result, he demanded that these activities be kept to negligible minimum.
Unapproved entry sites and routes on the Ghana-Togo border, according to Majeed Amandi, Chairman of the  Aflao Border  Security Committee,  are encouraging illicit activities such as fuel smuggling.

Mr. Amandi who doubles as 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 in a bid, to intensify patrols and enhance efforts to combat the long-standing problem.

The Assistant Commissioner noted that during patrol operations they observed that illegal actors operate at midnight to avoid detection. He described them as daring because they always found their way into the country’s borders and offload unwholesome petroleum products into the Ghanaian market. He said this is also a result of the unavailability of special boats for patrols on the seas at night.

The Chairman noted that border security agencies were in need of working tools to combat the illicit trade. The commander, therefore, 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 is dealt with, and hand over wrongdoers to the appropriate authorities.

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

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