Zimbabwe Energy Regulatory Authority (Zera) consumer services manager Nobert Matarutse has disclosed that the use of gas for domestic cooking has increased to 50 million kilogrammes up from 28 million kilogrammes as of last year due to power outages facing the country.

He made the remarks at the weekend at a domestic consumer education awareness workshop in the eastern border city, where Mutare Residents and Ratepayers Association partnered Zera.

Zera’s outreach programme was meant to enlighten the community on safe use of energy.

The meeting was also meant to appreciate the problems that residents are facing.

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“… the use of gas as of December 31, 2018 gas was at 28 million kilogrammes. We are expecting the use of gas to shoot to 50 million kilogrammes this year,” he said.

“If you compare with 2018, things were normal. Currently, you are aware that we are facing challenges. There has been a huge spike in the use of gas in the country “ Matarutse said.

He said the regulatory authority was concerned about the safety of domestic gas users.

“What we expect, for a start, is people need to buy gases from reputable suppliers because we value your safety first. We want our consumers to make sure that their gas cylinders are observed from time to time. Consumer security is critical to us. We want them to use gas without destroying property and not being killed,” he said.

“Given our outreach programmes, we can actually see there is a gap in terms of what we expect users to do in-terms of precautions to take, but wherever we have gone, we have some positive changes in terms of appreciation of the safe use of gas,” he said.