Members of Parliament have asked government to crack down on persons who siphon fuel from fuel tankers in transit.
Hon. Robina Rwakoojo (NRM, Gomba West) raised the matter during a House sitting on Thursday, 28 March 2019 saying it is common occurrence for people to siphon fuel from trucks on the road without any restrictions.
“It has become a usual scene that we see people scampering off with fuel from fuel trucks in the middle of traffic, which is dangerous,” she said.
Rwakoojo asked government to take measures that will stop these risky and dangerous acts. “A fire can easily break out injuring so many other innocent people who are nearby,” she added.
Kitgum District Woman Representative, Hon. Beatrice Anywar said some of this fuel is usually sold in bottles especially in the villages without any form of quality control and proper storage.
“Most of this fuel is kept in homes and has been a common source of fires in homes; the government needs to take note,” Anywar said.
The Minister of State for Energy and Mineral Development, Hon. Simon D’Ujanga said that they cannot curb the behaviour entirely because their jurisdiction covers the regulation of companies distributing the petroleum products.
“We only manage the legal activities within the fuel value chain and therefore, we have no capacity to control people who siphon fuel; we urge owners of these companies and the police to control the behaviour,” he said.
D’Ujanga added that the ministry has consistently run adverts forbidding the practice of selling fuel in bottles.
The Deputy Speaker, Jacob Oulanyah, however, asked the minister whether the ministry has no authority to make regulations on this matter to be enforced by the police.
D’Ujanga said that, “the regulations are there but can only be enforced by the police”.
Parliament directed the Deputy Prime Minister, Gen Moses Ali, to make a follow up. Gen Moses Ali said he would instruct the Ministry of Internal Affairs to address the problem.