State House says President Dr Lazarus Chakwera is equally concerned with the recent increase in fuel prices.
Director of Communications at State House, Sean Kampondeni said this in Lilongwe during the media briefing.
His remarks come in the wake of an average fuel price increase of 22.8 percent the Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) announced last Saturday.
He urged traders not to take advantage of the situation to unjustifiably and unnecessary raise prices of commodities and services.
There have been growing public fears that the fuel increase will in turn trigger an increase in the cost of goods and services.
Kampondeni, therefore, the President is aware of the pain Malawians are experiencing due to the fuel price hike.
“The President realizes that fuel is a strategic commodity to the country’s economy and as such any price increase pains him as well, just like any other person within the borders of this country,” said Kampondeni, who also the Executive Assistant to the President.
Kampondeni further said the current fuel pump price increase was “inevitable and necessary” as it was dictated by the global economic forces beyond Malawi’s control.
The Executive to the President urged Malawians to exercise patience as the Tonse Alliance is working around the clock to restore the country’s ailing economy.
According to him, the country’s economy was heavily destroyed by careless borrowing that saw the public debt pegged at around K4 trillion.
He also told the nation that Chakwera will on October 19 leave the country for Kenya, Dubai, and Scotland.
In Dubai, Chakwera will take part in Dubai Expo, which is underway and in Scotland, he will take part in the Conference of Parties (CoP) meeting.
Chakwera will return home on November 6 or 7.
Malawi’s Vice-President and president of the party UTM and senior partner in the Tonse Government, Saulos Chilima ,while campaigning against Peter Mutharika of the DPP attacked Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) over t fuel price hike and demanded a proper explanation and a reduction.
Chilima made the demand during a political rally that UTM held in Karonga district where thousands of supporters attended to listen to the party leaders as they unpacked their vision for Malawi.
The country’s second-in-command said MERA had no justification of effecting the latest fuel
price hike because the global oil prices have gone down this week, saying the hike is politically motivated.
“We know the kwacha has gone weaker against other currencies but increasing through prices is not the answer to solve the kwacha’s depreciation on the market hence they should not lie to us,” said Chilima then.
Under the new price structure, a litre of petrol is fetching 6.2 percent more from K932.50 to K990.50, diesel has gone up by 6.9 percent from K935.60 to K990.40 and paraffin is now selling at K785.80 from K735.30, a 3.93 percent hike.