Reduce fuel prices by at least 20% – NDC to government

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The main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has asked the government to reduce the pump prices of fuel by a minimum of 20%.

According to the party, the Akufo-Addo government “has deliberately refused to pass on the significant reduction in the price of crude oil on the global market to petroleum consumers in Ghana” following the “declining prices of crude oil on the international market” due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.

In a statement signed by its Communication Officer, Sammy Gyamfi, the party expressed disgust at the government, describing it as a “display of gross insensitivity by President Akufo-Addo who has consistently flattered to deceive on his promise to reduce fuel prices and all his flagship campaign promises.”

They further called on the general public to reject anything that falls short of a 20% reduction in the pump prices of fuel.

The call comes after oil prices saw its lowest drop since 1991 on Monday.

This is after Saudi Arabia started a price war with Russia by slashing its selling prices.

Saudi Arabia also pledged to release its pent-up supply onto the market which is currently facing falling demand because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Prior to this huge slash, crude prices had been relatively stable.

Observers have said prices are generally expected to go down significantly at the pumps, to ease pressure on consumers.

Brent crude futures fell by as much as $14.25, or 31.5%, to $31.02 a barrel. That was the biggest percentage drop since Jan. 17, 1991, at the start of the first Gulf War and the lowest since February 12, 2016. It was trading at $35.75 at 0114 GMT.

Call from COPEC

The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) earlier that Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) in the country reduce their ex-pump prices for consumers to reflect the sustained decline in the global crude oil prices.

According to COPEC, consumers should be benefitting from a reduction of between 10%-32% compared to the 2% that consumers have been given over the past few weeks.

COPEC also indicated that the cedi’s relative stability compared to other trading currencies should warrant a drop in prices.

Read the full statement below:

NDC CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE AND DRASTIC REDUCTION OF FUEL PRICES

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) has taken notice of the continuous reduction of the price of Brent crude on the international market in the last two (2) months. Specifically, we have noted how the price of Brent crude has declined by over 45%, from an average price of $63.60 per barrel in January 2020 to $36 per barrel currently.

There is no gainsaying the fact that the declining prices of crude oil on the international market, coupled with the artificial stability the Ghana cedi appears to be chalking, which is largely due to the Coronavirus outbreak and the injection of the recent $3 billion Eurobond into the economy, should have led to a significant drop in the pump prices of fuel by now.

Unfortunately but predictably, the Akufo-Addo government has deliberately refused to pass on the significant reduction in the prices of crude oil on the global market to petroleum consumers in Ghana. Within the period that crude oil prices have experienced a significant decline on the international market, consumers have only been given an insignificant and paltry reduction of 28 pesewas at the pump, from Ghs 5.62 in January 2020 to the current average price of Ghs 5.38.

This is callous and insulting to the sensibilities of Ghanaians who are going through excruciating hardships as a result of persistent increases in the pump prices of fuel, cumulatively by over 50% in three (3) years, especially given the fact that President Akufo-Addo whilst in opposition criticized the erstwhile Mahama regime for exorbitant fuel prices and promised to reduce same if elected.

The NDC is appalled by this display of gross insensitivity by President Akufo-Addo who has consistently flattered to deceive on his promise to reduce fuel prices and all his flagship campaign promises.

In line with current happenings on the international and local market, we call on the President to as a matter of urgency, ensure an immediate and drastic reduction of minimum 20% in the pump prices of fuel. Anything short of this should be fiercely rejected by the Ghanaian people. This, we believe, will reduce the extreme economic hardship in the country and ameliorate the plight of suffering Ghanaians.

Signed,
SAMMY GYAMFI
NATIONAL COMMUNICATION OFFICER

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