FUEL SITUATION RETURNS TO NORMAL, MOTORISTS REJOICE | One of the biggest fuel suppliers and retail company in the country, Total Zimbabwe has assured the nation that the fuel situation was now back to normal after the shortages that were experienced in some parts of the country last week as a result of panic buying.
Total Zimbabwe has one of the largest garage networks in the country with close to 100 operational retail network stations and over 100 general trade and specialties customers. Total Zimbabwe’s business development manager Mr Peter Mukawu yesterday said fuel was now readily available at their garages. This was after Government also assured the nation that fuel was not in short supply.
“By the way people are talking of fuel shortage. I think it was panic buying for those two days, things are back to normal, if you are short of fuel let me know, call me and we organise something for you,’’ said Mr Mukawu while addressing guests at the Bulawayo Motorsport Park in Richmond where the company was one the sponsors of the of the annual Main Circuit Racing.
The assurance comes after the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe last week announced that it was providing supplementary allocations amounting to $30 million on a weekly basis to cater for critical sectors of the economy.
The fuel sector is now getting an additional $10 million per week while cooking oil raw materials is getting $4 million, $5 million for electricity and around $2 million for pharmaceuticals.
A survey by Sunday News also revealed that for the greater part of last week there were no longer any fuel queues at garages in Bulawayo. However, most garages have adjusted their prices with petrol now averaging $1,40 per litre while diesel is now retailing at about $1,25 per litre.
The country went into panic mode recently after people reacted to rent seekers and opportunists who were spreading unfounded messages especially on social media to paint a situation where the economy was collapsing.
This triggered some panic buying and created temporary shortages including that of fuel. Government last week also said it has increased efforts to ensure fuel is readily available.
Energy and Power Development Minister Dr Samuel Undenge said the National Oil Infrastructure Company (NOIC) was now loading fuel 24 hours a day at Msasa and Mabvuku depots in Harare until the situation normalises.
“NOIC in the meantime is loading fuel 24 hours a day at Msasa and Mabvuku depots until the situation returns to normal, therefore, we have waived restrictions of fuel delivery in Harare during the night. The international fuel traders continue to pump fuel into the inland bonded storage to ensure continued security of fuel supply in the country. Oil companies must also plan their deliveries in good time and to quickly alert the authorities of any likely fuel stock-outs.