Fuel queues have resurfaced in Zimbabwe’s oldest town of Masvingo, breathing back life into the black market which had been killed by stabilised supplies.
Long queues stretching as long as a kilometre meandered at Ace Garage, the only one with supplies as other outlets had run out of the commodity since Wednesday.
By on Friday, the situation had not improved, bringing back sad memories of fuel shortages that hit the country three years ago.
Motorists interviewed said they had spent more than two hours in the queue to refuel their cars as shortages hit the city.
“We have been driving from one service station to another looking for fuel, but to no avail. We had to come here where we have waited three hours so far. We hope we are not going to be told that supplies have run again,” said one motorist.
Another motorist said she had no option but buy at the black market where prices were inflated.
“I have been forced to buy fuel from the black market dealers as I cannot stand these long queues,” she said.
A litre of petrol goes for around $1,40 at service stations, but the black market sells it for as much as $2.
A service station owner who requested anonymity attributed the queues to delays in deliveries from their suppliers.
“There is no need to panic. It is just an issue of delayed supplies,” he said, blaming delays at the Beitbridge border post.
Black market opportunists started hoarding the commodity into containers for resale at a higher price.
“This is our time. We have to make our dollar now or never,” a black market dealer said.