By Staff Writer Justice Sam Banjul.
Paid for And Commissioned by the
Freedom Newspaper.

Gambia’s collapse economy is taking its toll on the transportation industry. A major gas shortage  is making life difficult for travelers, local cab drivers and private vehicle owners. Thousands of travelers have been left stranded due to the gas shortage, the Freedom Newspaper can reveal. Fleet of cars had been queuing around city petrol stations and other surrounding towns scrambling for gas. Getting a gallon of gas is a rare opportunity today in the Gambia. Local gas sellers blamed the gas shortage to the “slow growth of the country’s ailing economy” and lack of gas importation on the side of gas company owners. While gas prices are going up at the world market, third world countries, such as the Gambia, tried to regulate the price for gas. This to some extent is driving potential investors away. Gas station owners say they cannot import gas into this country only to sell it at loss. Another reason advanced for the gas shortage was due to what our sources called “high rate of foreign exchange.” Most of the importers relied on foreign exchange before they could import gas into the Gambia.

In the town of Serrekunda for example, people could be seen walking on foot. They walked for miles before reaching their scheduled destination. They openly lamented about the current state of affairs befalling this country. Many Civil Servants report to work late due to lack of transportation. Many cab drivers would only take passengers who are willing to charter them on town trip.

The country’s economic collapse is driving many people here sleepless. Having one decent meal a day is hard to come by. Many families are starving to death. Malnutrition and hunger continues to ravage the impoverished populace.

Speaking to the Freedom Newspaper spokesman of the Shell Oil Company said “We are running out of gas. We have limited quantity of gas in stock. There is no indication that there would be a vessel here in short term. We would  soon stop selling gas because we want to reserve the remaining gas for our office use and other errands. The only way to end this problem is to allow us to increase price for gas. We cannot import gas and sell it at loss.” said the Shell official.

At Elton, Oil Company an insider explained that the State House purchased greater number of the gas. ” The office of the President received gas supply here. As we speak, our gas is almost finish. The vessel is yet to arrive here. Everybody is feeling the pain now. No gas. Some motorists are not convinced about the gas shortages. They spent night here queuing for gas. We cannot sell all our products at once. The remaining gas had been preserved for our loyal customers.” said the insider.

Posted on Sunday, June 17, 2007 (Archive on Thursday, June 28, 2007)
Posted by PNMBAI  Contributed by PNMBAI
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