Minister of Energy, Newton Kambala, has accused the previous Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) government of depleting the fuel stabilization fund and in turn, accumulating a K40 billion fuel debt.
Kambala said the DPP government reduced fuel prices more than necessary which in turn saw the fund being depleted.
“They did that for political reasons. They thought they will win the hearts of Malawians by reducing the fuel but Malawians are not foolish. Malawians knew the reduction was political and that is why they kicked them out of government,” said Kambala.
He added that government now owes fuel suppliers about K40 billion because of the mistake that the DPP government made.
According to Kambala, it will take a long time to clear the debt and build the stabilization fund.
His remarks were a response to DPP’s legal affairs spokesperson, Bright Msaka, who called on government to be responsible in the management of fuel prices and the stabilization fund.
Msaka said since the Tonse Alliance government came into power, all Malawians have experienced are increases in fuel prices.
Msaka says government is only taking advantage of the fuel prices on the global market to milk Malawians who are already poor.
He says government should utilize the stabilization fund to cushion Malawians.
To ensure that the debt is cleared, government has requested the suppliers to allow it to settle the debt in bits.
Kambala adds that government has been increasing the prices so that they reflect the international trends but also to generate money to clear the debt.
However, he says the recent increase is lower than what should have been effected saying government realizes the need to protect Malawians