Fuel smuggling rife in the North

31 August 2021 | Crime

TUYEIMO HAIDULA

OSHAKATI



Home affairs minister Albert Kawana says cheap fuel bought in Angola has created havoc for the Namibian police as it has led to an increase in smuggling.

Kawana made the remarks at the Namibia Revenue Authority (NamRa) warehouse in Oshakati on Wednesday, where smuggled fuel was confiscated by the police.

In the Oshana Region, 141 25-litre containers containing fuel were confiscated at Ondangwa and Oshakati.

In the Omusati Region, the police discovered 38 containers of petrol smuggled from Angola.

Kawana said the smugglers buy petrol at N$3 per litre in Angola, in comparison to the local price of N$14 per litre.

He agreed with energy minister Tom Alweendo, who said earlier this month that it was very difficult to control illegal border trading.

Alweendo had visited the Oshikango border post in the Ohangwena Region and expressed concern about the illegal fuel trade in the constituency,

"The long border makes it easy for people to cross anywhere," Kawana said.

Harming the economy

Speaking at the same event on Wednesday, police inspector-general Sebastian Ndeitunga said the smuggling was ruining the business of legal service stations.

Ndeitunga said a lack of customers had forced some employers to lay off their workers.

"Illegal fuel is negatively affecting the economy as people are not paying their dues such as tax to the government," he said.

Ndeitunga said it was difficult to control fuel smuggling because of the porous border with Angola.

He called on NamRa officials to engage frequently with the police so they could tackle the illegal border trading.

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