Ver Angola


Motorbike taxi drivers spend the night next to pumps due to lack of fuel in the south

The fuel shortage leads many motorcycle taxi drivers in the south of Angola to gather in endless queues and many of them end up spending the night at gas stations while waiting for an opportunity to refuel, they told Lusa.


In the city of Ondjiva, capital of the province of Cunene, dozens of motorcycle taxi drivers and motorists were visible lining their vehicles on one of the busiest avenues, complaining about the lack of fuel.

"Fuel is difficult, there is a lot of flooding every day, I arrived yesterday at 8pm local time and until today (around 3pm) I was almost unable to refuel", motorcycle taxi driver Joaquim Francisco told Lusa, in the middle of an endless string of motorbikes parked outside entrance of one of the pumps.

With faces downcast and exhausted by the wait, the motorcycle taxi drivers said that the fuel shortage in Ondjiva has been going on for weeks, and, when the stations are filled with trucks from the neighboring province of Huíla, only the vehicles are "privileged" in to the detriment of motorcycles.

Moisés Armando, a motorcycle taxi driver in Ondjiva, said he had been without work for almost 24 hours as a result of the fuel shortage in the city.

"I arrived here [at the fuel station] yesterday at 6pm, so far I haven't been able to fill up, the pump has been filled up now, but they don't allow us to fill up and we're still here in this queue without knowing when our turn will come", he lamented.

Destino Gervásio, who is also dedicated to this activity, told Lusa that he has not been able to refuel his motorcycle since Tuesday and said there is no explanation from gas station managers about the phenomenon.

Manuel Pascoal, who has been working in the profession for two years, is part of the group of young people who have already spent the night at gas stations, and, when speaking to Lusa, he expressed dissatisfaction at not being able to refuel his three-wheeled motorbike.

"The matter is really bad, we are not able to work, we have not been able to work since yesterday, we are not coping, some say there is no fuel, some say they have to prioritize motorists", he lamented.

Two huge queues, one made up of motorists and the other of motorcycle taxi drivers, who are the majority in that city, form the scene at the entrance to the two pumps located on the main avenue of Ondjiva.

In addition to Cunene, complaints about the lack of fuel are frequent in several provinces of Angola, often due to acts of smuggling.

Sonangol recently admitted the constraints, justifying it with delays in the cabotage of oil tankers.

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