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LPG marketers call off strike

BY: Emmanuel Bonney
LPG marketers call off strike
LPG marketers call off strike

Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) marketers in Ghana have called off the strike they started last Monday.

The decision, the group said, was because their concerns had been addressed by the government through the National Petroleum Authority (NPA).

Key among those concerns was the lifting of the ban on the construction of LPG stations across the country.

The Vice-Chair of the LPG Marketers Association, Gabriel Kumi, at a news conference yesterday, explained that “fortunately, the government has heeded to our call and concerns, and we received communication from the NPA that Cabinet, at its meeting yesterday, had lifted the ban on the construction of LPG stations across the country”.

He said with that assurance, the association was calling off the strike with immediate effect, although some of the issues had not been completely resolved.

“We have also resolved to do well to address the concerns of our drivers over poor remuneration. However, the concerns of the drivers over their harassment as a result of a new tracking device that has been introduced into the system remains unresolved.

“It is something that we would strongly want addressed because that is creating a lot of confusion and has led to about 76 drivers losing their lives.

“Fortunately, there is a meeting tomorrow to try and resolve these and other issues; we will be at the meeting with the drivers to sit with the NPA and the Ministry of Energy to amicably resolve that issue,” Mr Kuma said.

Strike

Last Monday, the Ghana National Tanker Drivers Association parked their trucks as they pressed for attention and resolution of a number of concerns they raised.

The association closed their stations in solidarity with a strike by the drivers in protest of treatment by the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited and the NPA.

The drivers also raised concerns with the seals and tracking devices that check the integrity of the fuel in the transportation process and the continuous ban on LPG stations under construction since 2017.

The situation was exacerbated as the marketers joined the industrial action, refusing to serve customers.

Statement

Meanwhile, a statement from the LPG Marketers, signed by the Chairman of the association, Mallam Bukari Amadu, expressed gratitude to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for his intervention.

“We are grateful to the good people of Ghana for their tremendous support. We also wish to thank the President, the Minister of Energy and the Chief Executive of the NPA for reversing a decision that has cost us the lives of some of our members and millions of Ghana cedis,” the statement said.

Decision

The decision, it said, was without prejudice to the association’s concern about NPA’s communication on the lifting of the ban as “we are particularly worried about the lack of details in the statement”.

It said it was the expectation of the association that the Ministry of Energy and the NPA would bring all other regulatory bodies on board to ensure the smooth implementation of the directive from Cabinet.

The association embarked on a nationwide strike over the ban on construction of new LPG stations, adding that it had for the past five years cost its members over $10 million.