Fuel Scarcity Hits Burundi As Economy Shrinks
Economic challenges are spreading across the central African nation worsening the impact of prevailing political violence.
Things are falling apart in Burundi.400,000 have fled the country seeking greener pastures.
Those remaining are asking questions - they want to know what has been the role of the country's only oil importer - Interpetrol Trading Limited.
Anti-corruption campaigners said the fuel shortages became severe after Interpetrol received majority of dollars allocated by the central bank to import fuel.
“The oil sector is undermined by favoritism and lack of transparency, because the rare hard currency available in the central bank reserves is given to one oil importer,” said Gabriel Rufyiri, head of anti-graft organisation OLUCOME.
The central bank declined to answer Reuters’ questions.
Interpetrol’s lawyer, Sylvestre Banzubaze, said: “I am not associated with the day-to-day operations and only intervene on legal questions. You should address your questions directly to Interpetrol sources.”
He did not respond when asked for further contacts and the company does not have a website.
The people have been the worse hit by the situation as the product which used to be sold for exorbitant prices has become invinsible.
Economically, the problem has damaged two big foreign investors, Kenya’s KenolKobil and South Africa’s Engen, a subsidiary of Malaysian parastatal Petronas.