Nyeri town today woke to a third day of pain and anguish for motorists and commuters after leading stations ran out of fuel owing to the ongoing fuel crunch currently ravaging the country.
A spot check at the various fuel stations within town revealed the majority had minimal activities after having exhausted their remaining fuel reserves by yesterday.
Only Total Energies service station near the Othaya junction was operational with hundreds of vehicles and bodaboda operators parked on from both ends of the usually busy road waiting to fuel.
The proprietor had to call in Police officers to help manage the impatient queue of motorists and riders, the majority of whom have camped at the site since yesterday.
Some of the riders told the press they had literally slept at the station after they got wind that the centre had received new stocks of diesel and petrol late last night.
Majority of the motorists complained about the long hours they have spent while hopping from one filling station to another in search of the precious commodity.
Moses Wang’ombe, a bodaboda operator, says that he had spent the entire night at the filling station waiting to be served. He says that the process is not only time-consuming but energy-sapping.
“I have been here for the better part of the night. I have queued on this line from 4 am and up to now I have not been served. We came here at 6 pm yesterday but were told to come back at 8 pm. Delivery was done at 8 am this morning. This is very tiring,” Wang’ombe said.
With Kenya’s economy dependent on fossil fuel, motorists are now blaming the harsh economic situation being experienced in the country.
“Let the government help us in solving this crisis. The fuel crisis has heavily impacted negatively on the country’s economy with all pointers showing we are headed for turbulent times. Prices of basic commodities are very high. Yesterday I bought toilet paper at Sh 45. If that’s the price of a toilet paper, then what will a packet of unga cost?” Wang’ombe wondered.
Susan Macharia, who operates a business within the town CBD termed fuel crisis as the root cause for challenges facing Kenyans.
Macharia appealed to the government to institute urgent mechanisms to address the challenge and salvage Kenyans from further suffering and loss of livelihoods.
“Personally, I have been queuing for hours now. I have not opened my business. I depend on that business to foot my bills, so if I don’t make it to the business in the evening, I’ll have nothing for my family. This is the problem most motorists and motorcyclists are experiencing at the moment. Fuel shortage has caused us a lot of problems,” she pointed out.
“The price of maize flour has gone up but the commodity is still available. Why can’t the government therefore solve this issue and provide enough fuel to us?” she wondered.
On April 2 Kenya Pipeline Company sent a press release confirming the availability of sufficient fuel supplies in all their depots across the country.
The company said there were over 69 million litres of super petrol, more than 94 million liters of diesel, more than 13 million litres of kerosene and over 23 million litres of jet fuel.
“Kenya Pipeline Company would like to confirm that there are ample stocks of petroleum products in our system throughout the country to meet demand,” assured KPC Managing Director, Dr Macharia Irungu.
“Our global stock holding is adequate to serve the region, with more ships in Mombasa queued for discharge,” he added through the press statement.