Govt holds fuel crisis meeting

HARARE - President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s under-fire government yesterday held an emergency meeting over the country’s worsening fuel crisis.

The debilitating fuel shortages have now resulted in desperate calls from stressed business leaders who want authorities to allocate them special supplies to stop the country’s burning economy from imploding altogether.

Observations by the Daily News show that the fuel crisis has worsened since businesses and schools re-opened, following the end of the festive season break.

“Government is taking measures and we are having a meeting today (yesterday) to address the issue,” permanent secretary in the ministry of Energy and Power Development, Gloria Magombo, told the Daily News.

At the same time, business leaders said the government needed to prioritise their needs, as companies were losing many precious hours of production due to the fuel shortages.

Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) president, Denford Mutashu, was among the business leaders who appealed to the government for fuel allocations, so that commerce and industry would not be incapacitated.

“Fuel shortages are affecting business badly ... Trucks are spending more time in fuel queues than at the work station and many hours are being lost.

“On the other hand, employees are being affected in terms of movement … like yesterday (Tuesday), where there were few public service vehicles on the road,” Mutashu said.

Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) president, Sifelani Jabangwe, said most companies had suspended deliveries of commodities and other key inputs such as raw materials, as the fuel crisis had deepened.

“The staff is losing productive time in fuel queues and we need to make deliveries, but we are failing to meet targets because of the prevailing crisis,” he said.

National Business Council of Zimbabwe (NBCZ) president, Langton Mabhanga, challenged the government to take measures to end the crisis.

“Fuel is a critical cog ... thus the current shortages represent the trashing of many productive hours by relegating millions of economically active human capital to stalking fuel queues,” Mabhanga said.

This week, many passengers have been struggling to get transport to and from work, as well as other destinations, as a result of the worsening fuel problems.

This, coupled with steep transport fares, has left thousands of commuters stranded — forcing many people to hitch precarious rides on lorries and pick-up trucks.

Instead of plying their routes regularly, most commuter omnibus and long distance buses are spending endless and often fruitless hours queuing for diesel at the country’s dry fuel stations.

Zimbabwe has been struggling to pay foreign suppliers of fuel and other commodities due to its dire financial position which economists say has been worsened by corruption and mismanagement.

The country requires between 120 million and 140 million litres of fuel every month, with diesel making up the bulk of fuel used by industry.

According to the government, Zimbabwe now requires on average US$100 million per month to cater for its fuel imports.

Comments (4)

There is a video out showing the presidents motorcade passing a very long fuel queue on Enterprise Road. Not sure if he cares much about this lot?

sipendu - 11 January 2019

Mnangagwa knew that he did not have the stamina to rescue the comatose eceonomy,after all he played a pivotal role in bringing the economy to its knees.His brief was to rule,rule,rule and nothing else.He does not have what it takes to arrest the tattered economy.People ululated and cheered when he was sworn in as the president forgeting that they were actually he was the same person who had helped old Bob to kill the economy.How could he have changed all of a sudden to be our "saviour"when he had spent most of his active time under the wings of old Bob.You cannot teach old dogs new tricks.Zanu pf is a cartel run by a mafioso.

janana wa Bikaz madhogodhogo - 11 January 2019

He was on a clean-up campaign in jacket and neck tie in the famous AVENUES street of Harare while his wife (who has no constitutional mandate) was trying to talk Doctors into returning for duty. The man has no clue his silence in all this mess is unbelievable.

Sinyo - 11 January 2019

No fuel problems in Zw as i read that there were 101 fuel tankers approaching harare yesterday - according to the herald ?

ace mukadota - 12 January 2019

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