Friday, August 18, 2017

Illegal petrol stalls in Sagaing city ordered to close

Unlicensed gas sellers operating illegally in Sagaing city have been told to clear house by November 15 or face legal repercussions. The township general administration department says the unsanctioned fuel stops are a fire hazard.

“We have reminded all illegally opened fuel stalls to shut down by the deadline: this month, on the 15th. We will have to take action on the stalls that continue to operate beyond this date as they are endangering the downtown area as a fire risk,” said U Aung San Oo, deputy officer of the Sagaing township general administration department.

The unlicensed gas stops include pop-up, side-of-the-road stalls, as well as large pump stations, which superficially resemble the legal gas stations, according to a member of Sagaing City Development Committee who asked not to be named.

“In the conducting the field visits, we discovered that some shops are selling large amounts of fuel with pump machines just like the official shops. But they have opened the business from their house. Some are selling gallons and gallons,” said the committee member. “If the stalls want to apply for a legal permit to operate officially, we will consider their application.”

According to the committee member, only a handful of the illegal petrol vendors have so far closed up operations. One of the gas sellers said many of the roadside shops are operating out of economic necessity, and if the government wants to close them, alternative sources of income should be offered.

“Streetside fuel stalls that sell by the bottle like us have been reminded of the coming crackdown. But our stall is how we make our daily living,” said U Soe Hlaing, a vendor near Sagaing Technology University. “We have no options since they ordered us to shut down. But I hope we can start sales again legally later.”

Translation by Emoon