The Ghana Committed Drivers Association, the Truth Drivers Union, Concern Drivers Association and other unions and associations have announced a 20 percent increase in transport fares effective Monday, May 17.
“The increase has become necessary in view of the number of taxes on fuel announced by the government in the 2021 budget and was subsequently approved by Parliament,” a joint press statement issued on Sunday, May 16 said.
According to the driver unions, they had decided on this as far back as Saturday, May 1 but had to wait for the final conclusion of negotiations.
They said with the issues coming out of the negotiations table “if we delay any further in increasing lorry fares by at least 20%, our transport business will collapse”.
“We, therefore, wish to impress upon our customers and the general public to bear with us as we have also factored their financial situation into our calculations before arriving at the 20%.”
They indicated that they had absorbed a lot of increases in petroleum products for a “long” time, resulting in kowtowing to decisions by stakeholders not to increase fares twice in a year as agreed.
“However, we the private road transport operators have been at the receiving end of this decision for far too long,” they said in the statement on Sunday.
“While we diligently obey the decision, prices of petroleum products keep increasing without corresponding increases in lorry fares.
“We hold a strong view that this has become unfair business practice with a dire consequences for our business.
“We have therefore resolved that any time fuel prices, spare parts, and other levies relating road transport go up, we will also adjust our lorry fares to reflect the increment.”
But the decision to increase fares is without the Ghana Road Transport Coordinating Council (GRTCC) and the Ghana Private Roads Transport Union (GPRTU).
They are still negotiating with the government, according to Ghana Committed Drivers Association, the Truth Drivers Union, and Concern Drivers Association.
They said it will be difficult to wait for the GRTCC and the GPRTU.
“We want to assure our customers and the general public that we are sensitive to the economic challenging situation we all find ourselves but we also need to save our business from collapsing with this modest increase in lorry fare.”