Sakunda Energy closes station after fuel leakage

MUTARE - Sakunda Energy (Pvt) Ltd was recently forced to close shop at its One Stop Civic Centre Station following an underground petrol leakage of over 10 000 litres.

The petrol station which is leased to the country’s Central Intelligent Organisation (CIO) Director Happyton Bonyongwe sent all its 35 employees at the service centre on indefinite unpaid leave following the incident.

The workers lamented that they were sent on forced leave without receiving their February salaries.

They said their management briefed them that the company had planned to cover salaries using proceeds from the leaked fuel and could not inform them when they intend to settle the wage bill.

The workers further expressed fears over their employment saying they were not sure of their job security after the incident.

‘’Our employment relationship at this company has not been healthy. Workers views are disregarded in major decisions a situation made worse by the non-existence of a workers committee here. Some of us are afraid they may not be recalled by management for work once the station resumes operations,’ said an employee with the firm who pleaded to remain anonymous.

It was confirmed that the property owners, Sakunda Energy was making frantic efforts to repair the leaking tank.

‘’So far the team has excavated around the tank and are still scrutinising to establish whether the leakage was as a result of human error or that it was natural. We do look forward to reopen soon as there is some progress in correcting the incident. Yes the workers are on unpaid leave but we are yet to be informed by the company’s superiors at the Head Office on the way forward. I don’t make decisions here,’’ said the station’s manager, Simon Nyakazeya.

It has been revealed that one of the station’s underground tank with a 46 000 Litres storage capacity was leaking fuel and this was established on the 26th of February when the company lost 12 000 Litres of fuel

‘’We discovered it on the day when the company had bought 17 000 Litres of fuel and some moments after pumping the fuel into the tank, we were surprised to record only 5 000. That is when it was discovered that the tank had leaked 12 000 Litres of the fuel,’’ said one of the station’s staffers.

The fuel lost through the leakage on the day was valued to be $23 630.

It was reported that the company was fined a total of $5000 by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) and it was ordered to stop operations until after maintaining the tank.

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