Truckers in the southwest Colombia have blocked main roads out of the city of Pasto in protest of fuel shortages causing lengthy queues at local petrol stations.
The transporters blocked main roads heading to the south of the city in protest at the lack of fuel since October 20 leading to huge lines at the cities 43 petrol stations.
“I invite citizens to try to have a normal day without hassle, and taxi drivers and motorcyclists to have the opportunity to meet with me to review the situation,” said Pasto Mayor, Harold Guerrero.
Protesters are up in arms about fuel shortages which occur at the end of every month due to stringent government fuel allocations for Nariño, causing drivers to queue for multiple hours to re-fill their vehicles.
“It is not fair that at the end of every month we have to sit in our cars for two, three hours or more to buy fuel. We are wasting a lot of time and it is greatly reducing our revenues,” Jorge Alzate, a local taxi driver said to El Tiempo.
The monthly allowance allocated by the Ministry of Mines and Energy to the Department of Nariño is 8 million 500 thousand gallons of petrol, but fuel distributors insist the quota should be increased by 1 million 500 thousand gallons.
Local discontent stems from the fact that the resolution to increase fuel allocations was finished more than a more ago, but to date no action has been taken by Minister of mines and energy Mauricio Cardenas.
According to El Tiempo, the governor of Nariño, Raul Delgado, said that despite his efforts, the Ministry of Finance will not sign the resolution approving the increase in the monthly fuel quota for the department.
The resolution would increase the fuel quota by 1.2 million gallons per month.
Locals claim that the fuel shortage is due to a higher allocation being sent to neighbouring state Cauca because it can be sold at a higher price.
- Por falta de gasolina conductores de Pasto bloquean vías (Radio Santa Fe)
- Pasto amaneció sin gasolina (El Tiempo)