The Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) says there is no justification for the just-announced 15-30% increases in the price of petroleum products and has consequently warned government and the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) to withdraw the increases with immediate effect or face the wrath of Ghanaians.
The NPA, on Thursday, December 29th announced that prices of petroleum products have gone up between 15 and 20 percent.
The increases, according to the NPA, are influenced by the government’s decision to withdraw subsidies on the products from next year.
Government projects it will spend nearly GH˘600 million on subsidizing petroleum products for this year alone. Though there is a hedging policy to cushion consumers, it only caters for 50 percent of the country’s monthly consumption.
But the political pressure group, in a statement issued today, slammed both the NPA and government accusing the latter of “hypocrisy” and seeking to “de-merry” the Christmas of Ghanaians.
“Obviously, times are bad for the ordinary Ghanaian. The failure to pay December salaries of public sector workers had already dampened the Christmas celebration and to hit the nation with this price hikes smacks of hypocrisy and the so called ‘better Ghana agenda’ of the NDC Government led by Professor Mills. It is interesting to note that, the NDC government is hell bent to cause a stir and ‘de-merry’ the Christmas of Ghanaians,” AFAG said.
Read below the statement issued by AFAG.
HALT THE FUEL PRICE INCREASES
The Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) is shocked at the 15-30% petroleum increases taking effect this Thursday the 29th of December 2011. This is clearly an indication of how the 2012 Politico-socio-economic governance of the NDC will pan out.
Obviously, times are bad for the ordinary Ghanaian. The failure to pay December salaries of public sector workers had already dampened the Christmas celebration and to hit the nation with this price hikes smacks of hypocrisy and the so called ‘better Ghana agenda’ of the NDC Government led by Professor Mills.
It is interesting to note that, the NDC government is hell bent to cause a stir and ‘de-merry’ the Christmas of Ghanaians. This has certainly become a routine. Last year, two(2) days after the new year celebration, ie 3rd of January, 2011, we were greeted with news of 30% price hikes in petroleum prices and the reason given was that, there is a rise in international crude price and TOR debt.
Again, in the year christened ‘Action’, the announcement of the 15 - 30% petroleum price hike has come as early as anticipated. It is obvious that, the NDC did not hear Nationwide complains of hard times especially in the yuletide.
But in all these torrid times, one thing which is very striking and worthy of note in the same petroleum saga, is about the contrary stance of Government and the NPA to increase the prices of petroleum product as against an Accra High court order presided over by Justice Patrick Baayeh on November 28th 2011, compelling the NPA to reduce the prices of petroleum products on account of illegal smuggling of Gh1.00 cedis in the price build-up.
We are indeed in interesting times in our country as far as the management and the administration of the petroleum sector is concerned. We in AFAG would like the NDC Government and the NPA to respond to these nagging questions;
1. If in 2007/8, at an international crude oil price of $147/barrel, petrol was less than GHC6.00, how come at $102/barrel, petrol is being sold at GHC8.00?
2. What happened with the hedging? Ghana requires an answer.
3. What has happened to the anticipated over GHC1.2billion accrued from the oil revenue as stated in the mid-year review of the 2011 budget statement?
4. What plans are being pursued to refine our own oil to do away with the transportation cost in the price build up?
THIS IS OUR RESOLVE
The price increase is not justified and that the only alternative for us in AFAG and Ghanaians at large in this call is for Government and the NPA, to as a matter of urgency withdraw the increases in prices on all petroleum products else AFAG would take the necessary action to fight for the good cause of Ghanaians.
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