UNBS pins truck drivers for spearheading fuel adulteration

Fuel adulteration is the mixing of fuel such as petrol and diesel with foreign components, especially kerosene in a bid to increase its quantity.

KAMPALA – The Uganda National Bureau of Standards (UNBS) has singled out fuel truck drivers for being the masterminds of the continued vice of fuel adulteration, a habit which inconveniences motorists in Uganda and poses a danger to society.

Peter Kitimbo, the UNBS field supervisor in charge of the fuel marking and quality monitoring programme said this act is mainly being carried out around places such as Naluwerere, Bugiri, and Busitema in Bugiri district when the fuel is in transit from Mombasa.

“The drivers branch off somewhere, they take off the good product and add in a bad product,” Kitimbo said while speaking to Uganda fuel dealers at a fuel marking sensitization campaign organized by the Ministry of Energy and UNBS in Kampala.

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Kitimbo asked the oil marketing companies to always cross-check the fuel in transit. He, however, says the quality of fuel compliance now stands at 99% in the country.

Uganda, according to data from the Energy Ministry, consumes about six million litres of fuel per day, which amounts to 162 million litres per month. Demand has, since 2018, been growing at 7 per cent per annum.

Diesel, which has an average consumption of 50 million litres per month, is the most consumed petroleum product, mainly used for heavy industrial activity and motoring.

Petrol has a monthly consumption of about 40 million litres while kerosene and jet fuel have a consumption rate of 28 million litres and seven million litres per month, respectively.

There are about 2,916 petrol stations (retail dealers) spread in different parts of the country, according to UNBS.

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Mr Kitimbo also said efforts were underway to harmonise fuel standards across East Africa with the aim of ensuring quality and high standards of fuel among regional member states.

There are also efforts, according to UNBS, to harmonise standards for liquefied petroleum gas and Bulk Illuminating Kerosene, also known as BIK, among others.

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