By Gilbert Ekugbe
Standards Organisation of Nigeria, SON, says it has slashed the cost of testing and certification of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) manufacturing plants and outlets by 50 percent.
This followed the inauguration of an Ad-hoc committee by the Standards body, comprising of SON officials and stakeholders in the oil and gas industry to sanitize the LPG sector in the country.
The Director-General, SON, Osita Aboloma, said that the move by the agency to reduce the cost of testing and certification of LPG plants was to cushion the effect of the harsh financial environment currently being faced by operators in the industry.
”We are also using this medium to encourage them to abide by standards and quality assurance. This is our gift to them and in return, we expect that people would get value for their hard earned money spent to make our environment safer for the use of LPG products,” he added.
”We are setting up this committee because we want them to serve as the society’s watchdogs and identify latest equipment and products that are used in the discharge and sales of LPG items.
“The committee will also certify both old and new equipment such as storage tanks, vessels, cylinders and other things to make them safer to bring about improved service delivery in the sector,” he said.
He noted that the terms of reference given to the committee are to sanitize the LPG sector and ensure professional and ethical practices by operators in the filling plants and retailers’ shops, report any incident of unethical practice and substandard products to SON especially roadside and illegal fabricators of substandard LPG tanks and cylinders.
He also added that the committee would also draw a plan and strategy for the LPG cylinder re-qualification scheme and the withdrawal of old and substandard of LPG cylinders from circulation, submit to the Director-General within three months for consideration and approval for implementation and come up with recommendations from time to time to move the LPG sector forward as it relates to SON mandates.
The Director, National Metrology Institute, SON, Engr. Obiora Manafa, added: “We would ensure that new and obsolete tanks, vessels, cylinders are certified before use. I want to implore all of us to give our time, expertise and commitment to ensure the success of this national assignment. We are going to achieve this mandate because the terms of reference are very clear,” he said.
The Deputy President, Nigeria LPG Association (NLPGA), Nuhu Yakubu, said the committee would continue to provide its support and ride on the back of the existing partnership with SON.
The National Treasurer, Nigerian Association of LPG Marketers, Ogunrinde Adebayo, noted that the committee is committed to the course of protecting lives and property of Nigerians and investment of all stakeholders.