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Government handling of fuel crisis shambolic

The past few days have been characterised by fuel shortages, which the government should deal with urgently.

The government should have foreseen the possibility of fuel shortages and done everything in its power to avert the crisis.

Instead, what we are witnessing is a very reactive government, when it should be proactive.

When reports of the fuel shortages started making rounds, Energy minister Simon Khaya Moyo referred questions to the Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera), the clearest sign that the government was not on top of the situation.

While Zera should provide answers, Moyo, as the minister in charge, should have been in a position to speak authoritatively about the problem and tell the nation when it was most likely to be solved.

With the genie out of the bottle, Moyo tried to address the fuel shortage problem and sadly his response does not inspire confidence.

The government should have advised the public that everything was under control before the crisis, instead of when there are shortages as this is a symptom of being unprepared and being reactive.

Moyo goes on to say there has been an increase in fuel demand in the past three months, but then again, if the government had realised that trend, they should have done everything within their power to address it before a crisis was born.

The government’s handling of the fuel crisis has been shambolic to say the least and we hope they have learnt from this setback and will do better next time.

The country is desperate for productivity and at the centre of it all is the availability of fuel and the government cannot afford any such shortages.

Coupled with that, resurfacing of queues at service stations means a lot of productive time is being wasted and this is bad for an economy that would do with all productive hours being put to good use.

Thus, it is imperative that the government is able to understand what the trends are, explain why there is a surge in the purchase of fuel and be in a position to plan properly for that.

Just as a reminder to Moyo: The winter season is upon us and with the wintry weather there is a tendency for an upsurge in the use of electricity.

Hopefully, he has a plan for this and he will not be caught flatfooted as he has been with the fuel situation.

The country can ill-afford energy shortages and it is incumbent on the government to put contingency plans in place in case there is an uptick in consumption.

Source :

Newsday

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