Transport fares in the country is set to increase by 20% effective Monday, May 17, 2021.
According to Private transport operators in the country, the agreed increment comes about after series of engagements among members.
In a communique issued by the operators,;it said the increment has been necessitated by different factors including new taxes on fuel, the cost of vehicle spare parts and charges levied by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA).
“A gallon of fuel which used to be sold at the pump for GHC 24.52 pesewas;is now sold at GHC 27.22 pesewas. Also, prices of spare parts and DVLA charges have shot up considerably. With these developments, if we delay any further in increasing lorry fares by at least 20%,;our transport business will collapse.”
The drivers indicated that the situation has added to the impact;the COVID-19 pandemic has on their business and called for effective measures to be put in place.
Transport fares to increase twice a year
Moreover, the transport unions disclosed an agreement has been reached that transport fares will increase only twice each year. It said they have also resolved to increase the fares anytime fuel prices,;cost of spare parts and other operational costs rise in order for their businesses not to collapse. The union then urged commuters to cooperate with them as the new fares take effect.
“It is our considered view that we will only go by the decision;to increase lorry fares twice a year if the powers that be can also ensure;that prices of petroleum products and spare parts are not increased;in the course of every year so as to guarantee stable prices and lorry fares.”
However, the operators noted that the GPRTU for some time now has pulled out of the Council and now joined the TUC and has since been negotiating with the government for an increase in lorry fares on its own.
“It has even gone ahead to put it in its constitution, Article 2 (k). It will therefore be difficult for us to keep waiting for them to conclude negotiations on the percentage of increase in lorry fares.”
The Private Transport Operators union is now made up of the Ghana Committed Drivers Association,;International Drivers Road Transport Union, Truth Drivers Union and the Concerned Drivers Association.
Prior to this the Road Transport Operators urged the general public to disregard any rumor of transport fares increment. According to the group, there hadn’t been a resolution with government on whether there should be an increment.
This came on the back of an inconclusive meeting by the union to deliberate on a possible review of the fares.
GPRTU on fare increment
GPRTU has for the past week engaged the Ministry of Transport to reach a consensus on the increment of fares. This follows the introduction of new taxes on fuel.
Earlier, the General Secretary of the Ghana Private Road and Transport Union,;Godfred Abulbire, indicated that the Union will increase transport fares. This, he noted will take effect once Parliament approved the budget.
Mr. Abulbire believes that drivers will be affected should transport fares remain unincreased.
According to the union, the 2021 budget contains a number of taxes that will affect their operations hence the decision.
“The moment Parliament approves the 2021 budget; we are sure that we will come out with lorry fares increased by a certain margin. We don’t want to make reference to the fuel price adjustments. Because there are other components like the road tolls which have also been increased”.