Malawi Government has said it has no idea as to when the fuel crisis which has hit the northern city of Mzuzu will stop, saying the problem was with the operators.
Malawi’s Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola said on Wednesday he had no idea when the fuel problem in Mzuzu would come to an end.
“I have no idea. But some trucks are in transit. The problem is between suppliers and operators. If operators have credit with suppliers, they will not get fuel because no cash, no fuel,” said Matola.
Mzuzu has been experiencing dry pumps for the past three days, a development that has seen businesses being affected.
Meanwhile, the development has also attracted the wrath of the Consumers Association of Malawi (Cama), which has warned of unspecified action should the fuel crisis continue, saying filling stations might be hoarding the fuel.
“We have visited all filling stations in the city and our impression is that fuel is there, but it is being hoarded. Some tankers came yesterday and the other day. Can we say that all that fuel is finished? If the crisis continues, we shall take some action,” said Cama’s coordinator for the North Isaac Gondwe.
As of Wednesday, motorists were forced to pack their cars as they could not get petrol in the filling stations. A number of black market players, who were offering five litres at K7 000 (about $17) had also run of the commodity. Taxis were also packed and the operators spent the day lamenting over loss of business.
One of the filling station owners attributed the dry spell to the cut in fuel prices. He said traders were working on how best they can handle the downward turn so that they do not make losses if the prices continue to go down.
Chairperson for taxi operators McDonald Njikho said the dry spell has hit the taxi operators very hard.