Daniel Nemukuyu Senior Reporter
MISMANAGEMENT of service stations bordering on corruption and nepotism by attendants who are taking advantage of the shortage of fuel is fast becoming a cause for concern. It has become the norm at service stations to see fuel attendants facilitating access to fuel by motorists outside queues and relatives, in the full glare of those who have been waiting for hours for their turn to refill their vehicles.
Most service stations are manned by young men and women hungry for a quick buck.
When The Herald visited most service stations in and around Harare, restless motorists were seen pushing and shoving.
Others shouted obscenities at fuel attendants and their managers accusing them of corruptly refuelling vehicles that have “jumped the queue”.
Fuel supplies improved this week with most service stations getting petrol and diesel deliveries but this did not translate to shorter queues.
Social media was also awash with video clips of fist fights pitting angry motorists at different service stations.
Police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi warned motorists against engaging in violence and committing other offences at fuel stations.
“We are aware that some motorists, especially kombi drivers, skip queues and cause violence at fuel stations.
“We urge them to desist from such behaviour. We appeal to all motorists to exercise patience and to respect each other in fuel queues.
“All those who commit offences at service stations are not immune to arrest and prosecution. They will be arrested,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
Asst Comm Nyathi urged all victims of violence at service stations to report to the police.
“Such cases must be reported to the police to allow the law to take its course,” he said.
Asst Comm Nyathi encouraged operators of service stations to request police security whenever there are indications of potential violence upon delivery of fuel.
“Most operators seek our services when they foresee violence upon receiving fuel deliveries. We encourage them to continue doing so to prevent cases of violence,” said Asst Comm Nyathi.
On Wednesday a fuel attendant at a Puma service station in Mt Hampden had to lock herself up in an office when motorists charged towards her.
This was after she had allegedly facilitated the skipping of queues by relatives and friends.
A similar situation was witnessed at a Total service station at Westgate at midday on Tuesday