No fuel crisis — Mangudya
Leonard Ncube, Victoria Falls Reporter
RESERVE Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) Governor Dr John Mangudya has assured the nation that there is no fuel crisis as the central bank allocated enough foreign currency to suppliers.
Dr Mangudya, who is in China on State business, told The Chronicle in an interview that queues that characterised fuel service stations in most parts of the country yesterday could have been a result of logistical challenges.
“There cannot be a crisis because we allocated enough fuel for the week. Since I am not around I can only assume that suppliers may have had logistical challenges collecting fuel from Msasa Depot (in Harare) for them to distribute countrywide,” said Dr Mangudya.
He promised to check on the situation.
Dr Mangudya said RBZ allocates $20 million foreign currency per week on Mondays or Tuesdays.
Government doubled foreign currency allocation to fuel suppliers from $10 million to $20 million per week in May this year to ensure constant fuel supplies.
In Victoria Falls motorists woke up to long winding queues at fuel stations yesterday while some outlets had no supplies at all.
A survey by The Chronicle showed that only diesel was available at some outlets while unscrupulous black market dealers had hiked prices taking advantage of shortages at the pump.
In Binga diesel was delivered on Sunday while fuel attendants said they were expecting petrol on Thursday.
In Victoria Falls motorists were caught unawares and queued at CMED fuel station in the morning as other outlets were yet to receive supplies.
Total was only selling to those with Total cards and cash resulting in people flocking to CMED.
At Petrotrade motorists were being told to check by end of day yesterday.
Parallel market dealers who sell fuel in containers at street corners were making a killing selling 5-litres for as high as $10, about $3 more than the pump price.
The pump price is $1.44 for petrol and $1.31 for diesel.
Prices vary by a few cents from one supplier to the other.
“I’m left with less than a quarter tank of fuel and I can’t continue carrying clients. I will have to join the queue until I get some fuel because I might get stuck with clients.
What it means is that we have lost business this morning,” said a taxi driver Mr Oliver Mungezi in Victoria Falls.
Binga and Victoria Falls usually suffer more because of distance from Harare.
In Hwange some of the garages were also without fuel while in Bulawayo long queues were also witnessed in the morning.
In the afternoon some garages were only serving those who would have paid in advance as supplies dwindled.
Some of the companies that supply bulk fuel include Sakunda Holdings, Total and IPG. — @ncubeleon