Protest against rising fuel costs gathers momentum
The newly formed People Against Petrol and Paraffin Price Increases (Pappi) is going ahead with its proposed nationwide protest against the rising price of fuel.
Visvin Reddy‚ speaking on behalf of the organisation‚ said on Friday that the rate at which petrol prices were increasing was unacceptable and having a profound impact on taxpayers.
“At the rate things are going now‚ we might end up paying R20 per litre by the end of this year‚” said Reddy.
Although the group is Durban-based‚ Reddy said they had activists in all provinces. “We have been contacted by thousands of South Africans asking us to do something‚” he said.
The protest action is planned for July 27.
It follows the appearance of ten motorists in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court for their alleged role in a “Fuel Prices Must Fall” blockade on the N3 outside the capital city on Wednesday. Traffic on the N3 was brought to a standstill.
Reddy made reference to the Fees Must Fall student movement‚ saying that the government initially had no money to fund free education but ultimately came up with a solution. Reddy said the organisation was engaging with unions‚ taxi associations and various other institutions to rally behind the campaign and stop all of their activities on July 27.
“We call upon all South Africans to join us in our campaign‚” he said. He described the increasing fuel hikes as an easy way to tax people‚ “because people can’t do without petrol.”
The Automobile Association of South Africa agreed that the recent fuel price hikes were impacting on the lives of all‚ “especially the poorest of the poor who rely on paraffin for heating‚ lighting and cooking.”
Petrol prices have increased four times during the course of 2018. TimesLIVE reported that one of the main reasons for the increase was the depreciation of the rand against the US dollar.