Editorial

Sale of adulterated fuel

Fuel (especially Premium Motor Spirit PMS) dealers will argue that they (illicitly) adulterate petroleum products, avoiding being caught, to cover cost, make profit and remain in business. If they don’t, the whole downstream oil business will go to blazes. Along with it will go the entire motoring sector. They won’t be converted about this wrong-doing. They will fight tooth and nail to remain in business.
But this is an unlawful way of remaining in business! It ruins many machines, engines and automobiles. It doesn’t make sense that fuel dealers around the country would cover their costs, make profit and be in business at the expense of all others whose businesses are destroyed by the adulterated fuels they sell to unsuspecting customers. Homes are often set on fire. People are killed in kerosene explosions. Car accidents occur, caused by knocked engines of vehicles in motion conveying people.
Will fuel dealers be permitted to criminally destroy the economy? Will they continue to be such vicious agents of death? How will the populace be protected? Who will do that? Are these legislative, judicial or executive matters? Will these sardonic puzzles solve themselves?
How do official, government-owned fuel stations manage to stay afloat selling genuine products? Who is adulterating the bad products?  Where is it done?
The simplistic thinking would be to clamp down on all defaulting fuel stations. Their sheer number would be too much to handle. Most fuel stations in the country would be closed down if a method of strict control is adopted. The proprietors would be in jail. Fuel prices will certainly spike as a result.
Money earned from adulterated fuels is ill-gotten, which government should not condone or tolerate. Yet going after fuel dealers would be shooting itself on both feet. The only option open to government is to give a stimulus package to fuel dealers which will not amount to the discredited fuel subsidy of the recent past. We must as a matter of policy salvage people in oil business as well as all others in society forced to cheat to make ends meet.
We are concerned that the federal and state governments cannot see serious infractions and breaches of public good and safety like this. They should wake up particularly about this one. Government must come in whenever circumstances beyond their control force their people into avoidable crime or misconduct that endangers the total well-being of society.

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