Kenyan Common Mwananchi Struggles After Fuel Price Hike
09/19/2023 13:15 in Opinion
By Mwanaharusi Jilo and Allan Kai
Mombasa, Kenya – The recent decision by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) to hike fuel prices in Kenya has sent shockwaves through the lives of ordinary Kenyan citizens. Just three days after the announcement, the ripple effects of this increase are being felt far and wide.
In the latest round of fuel price adjustments, EPRA raised the cost of petroleum, diesel, and kerosene by 16.96, 21.3, and 33.13 Kenyan shillings per litre, respectively. These substantial price hikes have left many Kenyan households grappling with an economic headache.
The surge in fuel prices has had a profound impact on the daily lives of Kenyans. The increased cost of transportation is among the most immediate effects. The Matatu Owners Association (MOA) responded swiftly to the price hike. MOA Chairman Albert Karakacha stated, “We have reached out to all our members across the country and agreed that immediately from today, our fares will go up by 20 percent.” This means that commuters will be forced to dig deeper into their pockets for daily travel expenses.
The impact isn’t limited to transportation alone. The rise in fuel prices has caused a domino effect, affecting the cost of essential goods and services. Basic commodities, from groceries to electricity bills, are becoming more expensive, making it increasingly challenging for ordinary Kenyans to make ends meet. A journey that used to cost 70 shillings may now demand 100 shillings, exacerbating the strain on consumers.
EPRA has been forthright in its warnings to Kenyans. This increase in fuel prices is not an isolated incident but part of a broader trend. The authority has attributed these price hikes to a combination of factors, including international oil prices, exchange rate fluctuations, and local taxes. As a result, EPRA is urging citizens to prepare for a prolonged period of economic uncertainty.
As Kenyan citizens grapple with the ever-escalating cost of living, questions are emerging about the nation’s trajectory. The Kenya Kwanza government, which vowed to bring prosperity and economic stability, now faces a critical test. With four more years left in its term, citizens are watching closely, hoping for relief and improved economic conditions.
The recent surge in fuel prices in Kenya has triggered a significant economic crisis for common mwananchi. From the burden of increased transportation costs to the rising prices of essential goods and services, Kenyans are enduring a turbulent economic period. The impact of these price hikes is leaving many to ponder the government’s ability to steer the nation towards economic prosperity, as they face the uncertainty of rougher waters in the years ahead.