Activist and opposition groups in Malawi have called for new demonstrations in response to a deteriorating fuel situation and growing living expenses.
Hundreds of people have been spending hours and days at gas stations in search of supplies over the past few weeks.
“I believe things have gotten a little out of hand. Since fuel is really the driving force behind all of our enterprises, I sincerely hope that our government can find a solution “Subira spoke to the BBC while she waited in line for gas.
Joel Ngonga, a taxi driver, claimed that he had been searching for petrol for 24 hours: “I think I’ve looked for fuel four times today. When I visit a gas station, they declare it to be finished.”
According to Malawi’s energy regulator, the issue is caused by a serious lack of foreign cash. With growing inflation rates that have driven up food prices, the nation is currently experiencing one of its greatest economic crises.
The Malawian government devalued the kwacha by 25% in May in an effort to stabilize its declining foreign exchange reserves. However, the action caused a dramatic rise in food prices and inflation.
Protesters demanding President Lazarus Chakwera’s resignation have spilled over their frustration with the nation’s economic plight into the streets.
The government has requested additional time to address the situation and claims that the president recognizes the anger of the populace.
The 19 million-strong country in southern Africa has the fourth-highest proportion of the global population living in extreme poverty.