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Business News of Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Source: classfmonline.com

LPG retailers end strike

Members of the Ghana Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) Operators Association (GLiPGOA) have called off their strike which lasted for three days.

This was after a meeting by the leadership of the association on Wednesday 23 May 2018.

Spokesperson for GLiPGOA, Nanaba Collins, told Class FM that the strike was not cancelled as a result of the meeting held with the Energy Ministry the previous day but due to the hardships customers faced within the few days the strike was declared.

He said their outlets are now open to customers even though the meeting held with the Energy Ministry was not fruitful. He added that they will continue to press for their demands.

In view of that, the group has sent a reminder to government that proposals given to the association cannot be accepted.

GLiPGOA wants government to stop its intended Cylinder Recirculation Module (CRM) because they believe over 7,000 people will be rendered jobless.

According to the group, the policy is ill-planned and will only worsen the unemployment rate in the country.

President Nana Akufo-Addo, on the advice of Cabinet, on 12 October 2017, directed that the model be implemented as part of measures to ensure that the nation does not experience any more gas explosions after public outcry greeted the massive explosion of an LPG filling station at Atomic Junction in Accra.

The model, if implemented, will ensure that LPG Bottling Plants are sited away from congested commercial and populated centres. The plants will also procure, brand, maintain and fill empty cylinders to be distributed to consumers and households through retail outlets.

Low-risk gas stations will be designated for the supply of gas to vehicles.

However, GLiPGOA maintains that apart from job losses, the programme will not address safety issues.

President of GLiPGOA, Torgbui Adaklu V stated on Monday, 7 May 2018 that there are 601 LPG stations across the country with a direct employment of 3,000 and indirect employment of about 4,000 people.

According to the group, the “Cylinder Recirculation Module is designed to deny us of our economic rights”, and will make it impossible for the payment of loans contracted by some operators.

Torgbui Adaklu V said the CRM is against government’s drive to encourage more jobs in the private sector and calculated to replace local operators “with multinational companies in the LPG retail business”.

He stressed that “the CRM cannot prevent gas explosions”, adding that there are many recorded cases of explosions in countries running CRM.

He emphasised that “The CRM is bound to fail in Ghana”, adding, consumers will be overburdened with high costs for the product, hence individuals without a certain income range will not be able to afford LPG. This, he said, will counter efforts to move away from the use of wood fuels.