|Audio Attachment:Listen to Fiifi Ankrah|
An activist of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC) has stoutly defended the just-announced increase in prices of petroleum products, saying it was “necessary”.
Fiifi Ankrah maintains that the increase in petroleum products was a necessary evil that government could not have done without, stressing that the situation could have been much worse had the Mills’ administration not taken that bold and difficult decision.
He has therefore called on Ghanaians to be appreciative of the fact that for the first time in the history of the country, there was no upward adjustment of petroleum products for almost a year, until now.
Prices of petroleum products have gone up between 15 and 20 percent starting today, Thursday, December 29. The increases, according to the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), are influenced by the government’s decision to withdraw subsidies on the products from next year.
Contributing to discussions on Peace FM’s Kokrokoo Morning Show, Fiifi Ankrah noted that the NDC government has over the years been subsidizing petroleum products with resources that could have channeled into developing other sectors of the economy.
According to him, inasmuch as most Ghanaians are unhappy with the increase in petroleum products, there was no way government could continue subsidizing the product .
“I’ve never seen or heard people applaud government when prices of petroleum products and other goods go up. But the truth is that, for the first time in the history of this country, petroleum products have not been increased in almost a year but the price of the commodity on the world market has been steadily rising meanwhile government is paying huge sums of money every month (as subsidy)… Government is using all the monies that could have been channeled into initiating developmental projects by subsidizing the product…but it has reached the point where if we continue to subsidize, it will affect the country,” he posited.
According to him, government was caught between the devil and the deep blue sea as to whether to adjust the price of the commodity to be at par with what pertains in other countries or continue to subsidize at the expense of developing the country’s economy.
“The petrol increase has become like a needed evil, when you increase it, there is problem, when you don’t there is also a problem. So in this case we were caught between the devil and the deep blue sea and whatever be the case, we must increase it otherwise all other countries will leave us behind and if that happens, we all know the consequences,” he added.
The NDC activist urged Ghanaians to accept the upward adjustment in good faith, stressing that there must be some sacrifices made for the country to develop.
“…the NDC is still talking about a better Ghana NOT a perfect Ghana,” he added.
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