By Patrick Biddah
The deputy Minister for Energy, Mr William Owuraku Aidoo, has charged the oil marketing companies to continue to adhere to the safety protocols in the discharge of their products .
He said, it is only when the oil marketing companies adhere to the laid down protocol in the oil industry that there will be little or no accident in the sector.
The devastation which is suffered as a result of accident from petroleum products are very dire which is why there is the need to always ensure strict adherence to safety protocols when handling the products, he pointed out.
According to him, evidence of the dire effects of petroleum and gas accidents are that of the Circle , Atomic Junction and Trade Fair explosions which should be a motivation for strict adherence to the safety protocols.
Speaking at the fifth safety week celebration of the Association of Oil Marketing companies ( AOMC) in Accra on Monday, the deputy Minister encouraged the industry players to continue to live up to the safety standards.
The week long celebration which ends on May 27, 2022 is under the theme” Petroleum Accidents Brings Tears Safety Bring Cheers”.
The celebration involves the training of the industry players on new safety measures standards and , exhibition by the OMCs on their products as well as health screening of personnel among others.
In order to consolidate the effort by the oil marketing companies In terms of adhering to the safety petroleum standards, the deputy Minister indicated that government introduced the LPG re- circulation programmeto largely sanitize the sector.
However, the president of theGhana Liquefied Petroleum Gas Operators Association ( GLPGOA) , Mr Kwame Sheikh, expressed the view that the LPG re-circulation programme has impeded the setting up of new gas filling stations across the country to serve communities.
As an association, he also said they are in a position to correct their mistakes if outcome of investigative reports are made available to them but often times the reports are made available only to the presidency.
“ Right now , we do not know the causes of all the gas accidents in the country because the reports are not made available to us. At least ,they should give us a copy and not just the presidency so that we would be able to know what went wrong and how to correct our members”, he emphasized.
Responding to the unavailability of investigative fire report at the function, the Director of Safety at the Ghana Fire Service, DCFO Mawusi Sarpong, explained that investigations are sanctioned by the Presidency and it is only proper to make the findings available to them accordingly.
She however said fires of all forms can be avoided if the attitude of everyone is geared towards safety, adding that concerted effort is needed to intensify the safety standards.
Speaking in an interview with Journalists, the Chief Executive Officer for the Association of Oil Marketing companies, Mr Agyemang Dua, used the occasion give the assurance that there are no fuel shortages in the country.
According to him, consumers do not rather have money to procure the commodity which is sending that signal about shortage.
In a remarks on behalf of the Chief Executive Officer of the National Petroleum Authority ( NPA) , the Director for Policy Coordination ,Madam Sheila Abiemo, expressed the hope that there would be enough education to be acquired by the companies at the end of the celebration.
“ We at NPA have observed the improvement in your safety procedures and standards since you started celebrating your safety week”, she said.
“ As the regulator anything you will do which, seeks to ensure safety in the petroleum downstream is welcomed by us”, she added.
The Environmental Protection Agency , COPEC, CBOD , the GSA and the other stakeholders were there to support the programme.