LPG advocate warns ‘bomb-like’ explosions may hit Nigerian homes


Worried by the continued influx of fake and sub-standard Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) cylinders into Nigeria, a cooking gas advocate has warned that Nigerian homes may start experiencing `bomb-like’ explosions in their kitchens soon, caused by fake cylinders.

The warning, follows reports that N38 million worth of cooking gas cylinders have been impounded by the Nigerian Customs Service in the latest clampdown on importers of fake cylinders.

Analysts say that N38 million is capable of bringing up to 1.8 million cylinders into the country. According to them, less than one million homes currently use LPG for their cooking in Nigeria, which is Africa’s most populous nation.

The Federal Government has recently launched a campaign to ensure that up to 13.8 million households adopt LPG for their cooking in the next five years.

Speaking in an interview with newsmen in Lagos on Tuesday, a former National Coordinator of the Women in LPG group, Mrs Nkechi Obi, expressed worry on the consequences of Nigerian homes contending with rampant cylinder explosions in their kitchens.

She warned that such explosions would be unavoidable as long as fake and sub-standard cylinders continued to be imported massively into Nigeria.

According to her, unrestricted importation of fake cylinders is a real and present danger because “it is like bringing explosives into homes, which can be deadly.

Obi, who is the Chief Executive Officer of the Techno Oil Group, argued that there was need for government to come hard on countries dumping fake cylinders in Nigeria.

According to her, market report shows that the TechnoGas brand of cylinders, manufactured in Nigeria command more acceptance and better quality, compared with cylinders imported into Nigeria, especially from China.

Obi, a long-time advocate of LPG adoption, lamented that continued importation of cylinders had been hurting Nigerian industrialists, engaged in cylinder manufacturing.

She stressed the need for customs, SON and the Department of Petroleum Resources to raise the stakes to discourage low-grade cylinders from entering Nigeria, to “save our lives’’.

The industrialist lamented that dominance of fake LPG cylinders was discouraging many people from embracing cooking gas, a development she described as affecting Nigeria’s LPG penetration drive.

Obi further expressed worry that in spite of the fact that Nigeria had more gas than oil, the nation had failed to exploit its gas resources optimally, resulting to more homes using fire wood and other unviable energy sources.

She said that Nigeria ought to depend more on LPG for cooking, to secure the environment, rather than destroying the fragile eco-system, in a bid to fetch firewood for cooking.