Petroleum products, was increased yesterday and as expected the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU), operators of commercial transport, known as ‘trotro’, have also vowed to increase transport fares today.
Already, Ghanaians are reeling under harsh economic times, taxes have been raised, whiles new ones were introduced in the last budget read to Parliament by the Finance Minister, another increment in transport fares will seriously affect the living standard of the people.
Last year was a rough year for Ghanaians, because of the election petition filed by the New Patriotic Party (NPP), challenging the legitimacy of
President, John Dramani Mahama, so they heaved a sigh of relief, when the year came to the end.
They woke up on Wednesday, January 1, 2004, full of hope and anticipation as the President, John Dramani Mahama in his address to the nation on December 31, 2013, promised that this year, will be better than last year.
Already, government has indicated to Ghanaian workers that it was not going to increase salaries by not more than 10 per cent this year. Utility service providers also had their wish granted twice in between four months, when Public Utility and Regulatory Commission (PURC), gave them the green
light to increase Electricity and water tariffs.
It is true that when you need electricity and water you must pay for it, but looking at the economic situation, government must provide some reliefs to the citizenry.
A lot of emphasis, unfortunately, has always been on the impact any increases is going to have on the civil and public servants, how about those in the informal sector and the teeming unemployed youth in the country.
Government, must as a matter of urgency introduce social intervention policies and programmes to alleviate the suffering of the people. The petroleum increases covers even kerosene, which is mostly consumed by the poor and less privileged in society.
We are appealing to the GPRTU, to also take it easy on Ghanaians as any astronomical increase in fares, will adversely affect the pockets of passengers.