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Business News of Tuesday, 8 May 2018


Uber yields to negotiation with drivers over concerns

Uber is set to engage its drivers to address their concerns on declining profits.

The company has disclosed to Citi Business News it will engage the drivers to assess their concerns and arrive at a compromise.

The response comes days after some disgruntled drivers of the transport service provider, embarked on a demonstration to protest the impact on their businesses.

The drivers have so far staged at least two demonstrations over the past week.

Among their concerns is the twenty-five percent retention fee on all trips charged by Uber which they say is expensive compared to others within the sub region.

Also, the drivers say the transport services company’s new discount plans for users is having a toll on their profit margins.

“In responding to us, Uber personnel said they were not ready to review the 25% retained by Uber, since they use the proceeds in maintaining the application along with Uber’s facilities in the country. We’re not happy at all. We are considering a demonstration soon to make a grievances heard.”

But reacting to the issues in an email request by Citi Business News, Uber’s official statement admitted to the drivers’ concerns and expressed its readiness to engage the drivers.

“We are aware that a small group of driver-partners gathered in Accra recently. We understand that the driver-partners have expressed concerns about ongoing rider promotions and Uber service fees; and we are open to engaging with driver-partners to understand their concerns,” the statement said.

According to Uber, it is constantly working to improve customer experience to ensure flexibility, increased economic opportunity, and driver support.

“Driver-partners are important to us and there are a number of ways they can speak to Uber about their individual concerns and our partner support team operates 24/7. Uber succeeds when our partners succeed which is why we are always exploring new ways for partners to grow and succeed in their small businesses.”

For now, it is unclear when Uber will conclude its negotiations with relevant stakeholders to avert further agitations from its drivers.

Uber has been operating in Ghana for about a year now.

Its relatively improved services have led to most commercial transport users resorting to it at the expense of local taxis.

The allegations of non-payment of taxes have been rife among taxi drivers as well as Uber drivers for some time now.

The Transport Ministry and the GRA are however yet to bring finality to the matter.