Speculation in transportation fees following recent fuel price increase

Public transport buses in Bujumbura downtown

Public transport buses in Bujumbura downtown

“Prices of transport have significantly increased since Sunday on 8th January. I make a round trip from Bujumbura to Muramvya every weekend to see my family as I work far from them. On Sunday evening, on my way back to Bujumbura, I paid BIF 5000 from Muramvya to Bujumbura while I used to pay BIF 2,500 or less, “says a passenger met at the North Station in the capital Bujumbura.

Drivers explain that this rise in transportation price is due to the recent increase in fuel prices.

“The Government has increased by BIF 100 on the liter of fuel. How can drivers double the cost of transportation for each passenger? This is mere speculation,” says one passenger.

He calls on the Government of Burundi to stabilize transportation fees throughout the country. “Passengers fall victims of the situation,” he says.

A bus driver says there is no fixed price in transport. “We raise prices if there are many passengers as we also feel compelled to bring them down when there are few passengers,” says a Bujumbura-Ngozi transport driver.

A Bujumbura-Kanyaru taxi driver says the BIF 100 surcharge on the liter of fuel is not very much significant. He, however, does not deny that taxi drivers increased by BIF 5000 on the Bujumbura-Kanyaru transport price last Sunday.

Over the last weekend, the Government of Burundi has decided to increase by BIF 100 on the price of a liter of fuel.

The general budget of the State fiscal year 2017 provides for new taxes to offset the suspended external aid. “There is this consumption tax on fuel at BIF 100 per liter,” said Domitien Ndihokubwayo, the Finance Minister upon the voting of the bill on 2017 budget in the parliament.

Jean Bosco Ntunzwenimana, Minister of Transport says the decision to raise the price of fuel was taken during the weekend, the reason why he has not been able to speak with all the concerned partners to fix the transport prices.
“I have already contacted the representatives of drivers and the concerned department in the Commerce Ministry. I will communicate the results of our consultation very soon, “says Ntunzwenimana.