While government is busy touting implementation of social and economic policies for development Afriem can reveal that policies on fuel are becoming useless as some business men are buying and selling fuel from neighbouring Zambia, Tanzania and Mozambique.
The fuel business involving neighbouring countries which is done secretly, has become an easy money spinner as buyers and sellers are making a big fortune out of it.
Our reporter caught up with one secret business man (name withheld for security reasons) and here is the outcome, Afriem Vs Business Person, BP.
Afriem: What is the reason behind this secret business?
BP: Life is hard in Malawi and everyone is looking for money, I was tipped of this business by a friend and I followed the lead and now am comfortable, we are doing better.
Afriem: How did a friend tip to convince you?
BP: As you recall that global fuel prices have significantly gone down by over 50% hence making fuel cheaper than before, so my friend did his market research and found out that Tanzania, Mozambique, Zambia and other countries have been reducing fuel prices based on global market status but here in Malawi there was not reductions. It is in this scenario that my friend saw an opportunity to buy fuel across the boarder and resell here in Malawi, a business which is very profitable now. So I joined on a small scale but I have grown and we are getting bigger because money is flowing.
Afriem: How do you bring the fuel in the country?
BP: That I cannot tell you in detail but you must know that there is a lot involved and its a whole range of a chain sharing the cake along the way and in the end we find ourselves with fuel on our market.
Afriem: But do you know that you are breaking the laws of Malawi through your illegal business?
BP: We are doing business illegally but on the other hand it is legally because government itself is leading in breaking laws on fuel. Remember government told us about the automatic fuel pricing mechanism policy? Where is that policy now? We could have had cheaper fuel in Malawi but government is breaking its own laws so we are just emulating, if anything, government must reduce fuel as per global market value. Fuel outside the country is cheap since the governments there did what they were suppose to do thus reducing prices, yes cutting down the prices by 50 percent yet malawi has not done that.
Afrien: So you think government is being unfair to motorists and fuel users?
BP: Quite right because fuel has gone down by 50% but government has only reduced by about meagre 10%, so the question is, where is the remaining 40% because what that means is that government is pocketing fuel money sold from that 40% and we are not told as to where this money os going to? This government is stealing from its people silently or secretly and government is also capitalizing on the ignorance of people.
Afriem: Why can’t you respect laws of the land and stop all this dangerous business?
BP: We can’t stop because we are not wrong, government is the one to give the citizens 40%first of fuel reductions otherwise as St Augustine said “An unjust law is no law at all” considering that civil disobedience has been used to fight injust.
Afriem: What do you mean by your last statement?
BP: What I mean is that government has engaged the unjust terraine by not reducing fuel prices instead it is cashing in for balancing up its zero aid budget I think, so our cause is civil disobedience, we know its illegal to import fuel as we are doing but we are doing this to fight government to consider significant fuel price reductions.
Afriem: In conclusion, haven’t you heard about two wrongs don’t make it right?
BP: That old saying doesn’t hold water nowadays my brother, by buying from Zambia and Mozambique like many are doing already.it is because there is no law currently on fuel until the price is slashed to 50 percent.