Last Updated on 1st October 2021
The UK continues its journey through an epoch of endless social, economic and political tremors shaking the world.
Earlier last month, CO₂ shortages in the UK– used to keep food fresh, especially meat – left the government to pay high amounts to acquire CO₂ outside the European Single Market; a market the UK left.
A global surge of wholesale gas prices then came knocking, causing seven UK energy suppliers to collapse last month alone: PfP Energy, MoneyPlus Energy, Utility Point, People’s Energy, Green and Avro Energy. And this isn’t the end of the energy crisis.
Now, with “closed” signs outside petrol stations, long queues and caps on how much fuel you can put in your vehicle, the UK faces its latest panic-buying episode due to a shortage of HGV – heavy goods vehicle – drivers.
It’s not just petrol and diesel; food and other goods are not reaching shops and supermarkets, leaving isles completely empty. The biggest supermarkets in the UK – including Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons – have been affected by supply issues due to the lack of lorry drivers.
Estimates put the UK short of 100,000 HGV drivers.
Though many hate to admit it, Brexit has been a driving force behind the oft-repeated “supply chain issues”. The pandemic has had a significant influence too, of course; however, the UK’s rash decision to leave the EU – that was fuelled by a hateful and decisive campaign – left foreign workers heading towards the exit and businesses in turmoil.
According to the UK’s Road Haulage Association (RHA), the HGV industry lost 20,000 European drivers due to Brexit. In fact, of 616 hauliers, “retiring colleagues and Brexit topped the list of reasons behind the driver shortages.” (www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-58670792)
Immigration rules and self-isolation requirements (due to the pandemic) add to the mix of problems foreign workers face when trying to enter the UK.
The government has reneged a little on its Brexit visa clampdown and plans to dish out temporary visas to European lorry drivers to enter the UK and end the fuel panic.
Had Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V’saa advice been heeded, this chaos could have been largely avoided:
“The formation of the European Union has been a great achievement on the part of the European countries, for it has been a means of uniting this Continent. And so you should make all possible efforts to preserve this unity […] Remember that the strength of Europe lies in it remaining united and together as one. Such unity will not only benefit you here in Europe but at a global level will be the means for this Continent to maintain its strength and influence.”
Huzooraa did not limit the importance of unity and social cohesion to Europe. He said:
“[…] we should strive for the entire world to unite together. In terms of currency, the world should be united. In terms of business and trade the world should be united. And in terms of freedom of movement and immigration, cohesive and practical policies should be developed, so that the world can become united.” (www.pressahmadiyya.com/press-releases/2012/12/khalifa-islam-makes-historic-address-european-parliament/)
As the UK faces real and serious repercussions of disuniting and the extra load of the pandemic, we are witnessing crises the world over. Countries like Lebanon, Venezuela and Afghanistan suffer severe economic breakdowns leading to horrific scenes of human suffering. Conflicts and immoral political rivalries across the world continue to spread and world powers are toiling in building alliances with other nations, based on vested interests.
Recently, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa made the statement that we were heading towards “a very dark and bleak end of this world” – it would be naïve to say this prediction was far from reality. The tremors can be felt already.
Huzooraa, however, did not say this would be the certain end; there was a clause of hope:
“This is why I have been telling, all the time, to the people of the world – to politicians, to leaders – that they ought to change themselves and try to establish true justice, absolute justice in the world and discharge their duties to their Creator and their fellow beings.”
This was not the only statement of Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa in recent times – for well over a decade, when things weren’t so bad, at least for the public, Huzooraa warned of the bleak future ahead if humanity did not reform itself. Ever since, Hazrat Khalifatul Masihaa has been urging the world to take action and steer the ship of humanity away from a catastrophe that our future generations will not forgive us for.
This warning comes from a heart that is inspired by Allah the Almighty Himself and as the Holy Quran puts it:
“He admonished you that you may take heed.” (Surah al-Nahl, Ch.16: V.91)
(By Ataul Fatir Tahir, Al Hakam)