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Cameroon Fuel Shortage Breeds Malpractices at Filling Stations


Despite the high subsidy granted by government, the country is facing an incredible fuel shortage which has quickly resulted to the illicit sale of fuel by station workers.


This situation of shortage has left room for corruption, because the pump attendants have created a business around this shortage. “To be served, you have to know the pump attendant, or you give him even 1000F to serve you fuel“, says a motorbike driver at Tradex Mimboman. Another added, “Since yesterday it’s like this, the pump attendants are upstairs. We are forced to [tchoko]  to get fuel. The pump attendants have become kings instead of the customer, as you see here.”

Like the latter, many are desperate. “I lined up at six o’clock, it’s 7:30 and I still don’t have the fuel. All those you see here are waiting. Several colleagues have already run out of fuel, that’s why you see people with cans. We are here, waiting for the tanker,” says Simon, a taximan lined up at Total Fouda.

On the users’ side, the concern is palpable. “We are not going to pretend that there is no problem. It may not be official, but the price of transport has increased. I often pay 100 francs from Terminus to Avenue Germaine, this morning I paid 150 francs and the driver took me because I had the coins. Yesterday I paid 200 F from Terminus to Nkoabang, instead of 150 F as usual,” lamented a young lady in the taxi.

Another passenger said, “The problem is that you have to wait a long time to find a taxi. Many of them have parked, some of the taxi ranks are at a standstill”.

In addition, in the face of the shortage and despite negotiations with the pump attendant, it is learnt that fuel is served on a pro-rata basis. “The fuel comes (19 July 2022 at 6pm) to Tradex Mimboman, you see how crowded it is. No car consumes more than 5000 F and motorbikes are 1000 F. The situation is serious,” said a motorcyclist.

This situation comes as the government announced on Monday 11 July that 62,500 cubic metres of petroleum products had arrived in Cameroon, and that 123,000 cubic metres of Super and Gasoil were also on their way to the Cameroonian coast to supply the Cameroonian market in the coming days.

In a recent communiqué, the government indicated that these subsidies were causing the state to lose revenue, estimated at 80 billion CFA francs for the month of June 2022 alone, and 317 billion CFA francs for the entire first quarter of 2022, an expense that the IMF considers misplaced.

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