Load Shedding and Fuel Shortage prompted axing of Energy Minister Gumbo

20 May 2019
Fortune Chasi

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa has announced the appointment of Deputy Minister of Transport, Fortune Chasi, as the new minister of energy, as the country continues to face rotational power cuts and fuel shortages. Former Minister of Energy Joram Gumbo has been re-assigned to a newly created position in the president’s office.

Zimbabwe started implementing planned load shedding last Monday, given low water levels at the Kariba Dam’s hydroelectric power plant, generation constraints at local power stations and limited foreign imports. The country is also facing fuel shortages, which let to customers waiting up to 10 hours at various gas stations last week.

Gumbo had repeatedly blamed fuel shortages on the limited availability of foreign currency, saying this meant the country could not meet its import requirements for both diesel and petrol. Zimbabwe imported US$ 36.4m worth of petrol and US$ 60.6m worth of diesel in February, but this fell short of requirements.

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