The member of parliament for Ngami constituency, Carterpillar Hikuama has criticized the decision by President Mokgweetsi Masisi to review fuel stations and ration sales of fuel as it has negative repercussions for farmers in the district.
In his address yesterday, on fuel shortage, President Masisi has admitted that the country is grappling with fuel shortage and the government has reviewed the fuel stations operating hours and ration sales such as each car fuel at maximum of P25O and the purchase of fuel with Jerry cans which will be only allowed on Thursday.
Another decision was that they will be no purchasing of petrol with drums or large containers. Hikuama has decried the decision by government will have huge repercussions in the Ngami and Okavango constituencies.
He explained that the whole of North West region survives by using fuels everyday in their boreholes to pump water for livestock and other farming activities. Hikuama also stated that the decision will also affect people who uses boats as mode of transport into rural areas into the delta. He regrettably decried it is difficult to take water pump engines and boats into filling stations as the decision to only allow purchase of fuel with Jerry cans on Thursday only will affect many people.
He therefore calls for farmers to be granted waiver to be allowed fill full tanks as they travel long distance to come to Maun and buy petrol to water their cattle. He further noted that most of the farmers are now using petrol as opposed to diesel in the boreholes and allowing purchase of fuel with jerry cans on Thursday will have negative impacts on their livestock as cattle need water on a daily basis. He also noted that the are approaching the summer season where farmers need to use more fuel and if the situation continues it will not be economically viable for many farmers.
The sectary for Ngamiland Agricultural Management Association NAMA, Hureva Tjavanga also concurred with Hikuama sentiments that the decision by the government will negatively affects the farming community. He added that most of farmers are situated in far places from the towns and they will have to drive more than 500 kilometers. He added that if farmer will fill less than P250, they will be forced to come to town every three days which is not economically viable.
Tjavanga says as farmers they think its wrong decision all together and it is their hope that govt will forced to revive the decision, otherwise it has the potential to collapses the rural economy.