The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) is extremely concerned by the adverse impact on the poor due to the escalating fuel prices and levies.
As of April 1 the total cost of the general fuel levy, the RAF levy and customs and excise taxes, plus the new carbon tax, would amount to R5.63 per litre for petrol and R5.49 per litre for diesel.
The Energy Department announced that the price of 95 octane petrol will increase by R1.31 a litre in inland provinces, whilst motorists on the coast will have to pay R1.26 more.
The poor and vulnerable will bear the brutal brunt of these incessant increases.
South Africans can ill-afford these ill-considered fuel hikes born out of laziness on the part of government to explore alternative means to generate taxes on one hand and reduce fuel prices on the other.
The risks to the economy insofar as certainty and sustainability are concerned because of these increases are grave.
The IFP therefore reiterates its call for all fuel levies to be suspended with immediate effect.
The IFP calls on government to urgently suspend the fuel levy until our economy shows positive growth and the “stimulus package” presented last year yields positive results in this regard.
South Africans cannot continue to suffer without relief from undue poverty while government has increased VAT, rates and taxes across metros and councils in the country - and now commuters wouldn’t be able to get to work nor are motorists able to fill up their tanks.
The government must consider the extremely concerning and prevailing price hike in fuel, and the deleterious effects this will have not only on the South African economy at large, but more importantly, on the welfare of ordinary South African citizens who will once again shoulder the negative impact of the increase of costs to business, who will simply pass such costs increases onto the consumer.
The current fuel hikes are simply not sustainable for the poor and the economy.
Mkhuleko Hlengwa MP
IFP National Spokesperson
071 111 0539