Mombasa, KENYA: If you own a car, better fill its tanks now as Mombasa County Petrol stations are about to run out of fuel following the move by truck drivers distributing fuel to down their tools in protest of the 16% petroleum levy.
Petrol station attendants have expressed concern in the amount of petroleum product remaining, which they say is likely to run out sooner than later.
“We are almost running out of petroleum products especially petrol. A lot of clients are coming in to fuel because in some other stations, they have already run out of petrol and soon we will also follow suit, and when that happens we will just shut down!” explained Zuhura a Kobil petrol station attendant.
“Petroleum products are there but the truck drivers at the depots have downed their tools. Trucks going in the depots are not coming out as a move to protest the 16% VAT and considering the risks at the depots, depots cannot take chances to allow more trucks to go in or out considering a possible fire that can lead to great losses,” Zuhura explained.
Trucks from different petrol station remained packed outside the Shimanzi depots.
“We have been here for two days now without going in. Personally, even with police escort, I can’t risk going in to refill my truck with petroleum because at the end of emptying at the station I will reunite with other drivers and that will seem like betrayal to my fellow drivers. The truck can even be set ablaze so all I can do is sit here and wait for whatever happens next,” explained Mohammed Amir a truck driver.
Tuk-tuk drivers took to the streets on Thursday to protest the 16% VAT, with matatu operators promising to follow suit on Monday.
Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) on Wednesday revoked Kenya Independent Petroleum Distributors Association (KIPEDA) license following their strike, which saw many parts of the country experience fuel shortage.
“The Commission, therefore, wishes to inform members of the public that the action by Kipeda Holdings Limited amounts to economic sabotage and hereby cancels the license of the said licensee pursuant to Section 85 of the Energy Act No. 12 of 2006,” ERC said.
“Kipeda Holdings Limited is therefore no longer licensed to carry out import, export and wholesale of petroleum products,” ERC asserted, further advising all its licensees to strictly adhere to license conditions