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Fuel prices drop marginally but CSOs, transport operators question pricing system

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Fuel prices have dropped marginally at the pumps following a continuous decline in global oil prices since last week.

The Ghana News Agency’s monitoring of oil prices at some pumps since 1st December, 2021, indicate that the prices of petrol and diesel have dropped from 6.9 per litre to an average 6.80 per litre – representing about 1.4 per cent decrement, with a few still going some 10 to 15 pesewas down.

Fuel pricing in Ghana is deregulated, meaning prices at the international market have direct impact on prices locally.

Last week, the price of Brent crude fell from $2.87, or 3.9 per cent, to settle at $70.57 a barrel, after hitting an intraday low of $70.22 – the lowest since August.

Some experts have projected a further decline in global oil prices in the coming weeks, with many more countries detecting the Omicron variant of the coronavirus – which the experts say has led to a decline in demand for petroleum products amid increasing supply.

The Institute for Energy Security (IES) had earlier projected that fuel prices would drop between three to five per cent at the local pumps due to a sharp decline (about 10 dollars per barrel) in the price of Brent crude late November.

Meanwhile, some transport operators and analysts have expressed dissatisfaction a
about the reduction rate at the local pumps, questioning the relevance of the deregulation system.

In an interview with GNA, Mr Duncan Amoah, Executive Secretary, Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) said it was unfortunate that some Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) had still not reduced their prices, adding that the price liberalisation system had made consumers “worse-off.”

“Deregulation is clearly not working as it should in Ghana. If you take a look at when we introduced price liberalisation in July 2016, the only thing that has been achieved is government taking its hands of announcing fuel prices.

“But on the contrary, the people have been left worse-off. Total incidents of taxes on fuel prices at the start of price liberation were just 82p, but as we speak today, we’ve crossed 2.60p,” he said.

He said the drop in global oil prices was not commiserating with decline in prices locally due to the depreciation of the cedi and the taxes imposed on petroleum products.

“We should find a working solution that delinks the cedi’s performance on the local market to our petroleum pricing.

“Looking at our importation estimates, if the Bank of Ghana could guarantee some dollar for suppliers, it will simply mean that those importers or the BDCs will not need to do what we call the forward rate, which eventually affects their pricing,” he said.

Mr Fritz Moses, a Research Analyst at the IES, said the Institute was anticipating many more OMCs, which were yet to change their prices to do so to reflect the global trend.

He projected that the decline in prices would remain same till the end of the second half of the year when prices would be reviewed based on the happenings on the international market and the strength of the local currency against the US dollar.

“With current oil price situation on the international market where we see Brent drop below $70 per barrel, it will be safe to project that prices of fuel at the pump in Ghana may reduce further before the year ends.

“But consumers and traders alike should expect a market correction, where prices will rise beyond $80 per barrel within the first half of 2022,” he said.

In another interview, the General Secretary of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU), Mr Godfred Abulbire Adogma, also expressed dissatisfaction about the reduction rate.

He said the GPRTU maintained its position that the government should scrap some taxes on petroleum products, including the Energy Sector Levy, and the Energy Debt Recovery Levy to ease the burden on consumers.

“If the taxes are removed, whether the prices of petroleum products on the international market are high or low, the prices will be stable locally,” he said.

Currently, there are 12 different taxes and levies on petroleum products.

An assessment of the current price build-up indicates that for every litre of petrol now sold at ¢6.80, there is a tax component of about ¢2.70, constituting about 40 per cent of the total price build-up.

The taxes and levies include Energy Debt Recovery Levy, 49p; Road Fund Levy, 48p, Energy Fund Levy, 1p, Price Stabilisation and Recovery Levy 14p; Sanitation and Pollution Levy, 10p; Energy Sector Recovery Levy, 20p; Special Petroleum Tax, 46p, and Primary Distribution Margin, 11p.

The rest are: BOST Margin, 9p; Fuel Marking Margin, 5p; Marketers’ Margin 46p, and Dealers (Retailers/Operators) Margin, 30p.

Source: GNA

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National: 2023 Budget: TUC to reject government’s salary projection of ₵44.9m

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Deputy-General-Secretary-of-the-Trades-Union-Congress-TUC-Joshua-Ansah

After several attempts to reach an agreement with government over an increment in their base pay, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) is expected to meet government on Wednesday to finalise a deal.

But before that meeting gets underway, the Trades Union Congress is warning that it will not accept government’s projections in the 2023 Budget.

The Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, reading the 2023 Budget in Parliament projected compensation of employees at GH¢44,990 million (5.6% of GDP).

Earlier, government also proposed a 12% salary increment during the last negotiation with Organised Labour but it was turned down.

 

Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express on Tuesday, Deputy General Secretary of TUC, Joshua Ansah stated that they would not agree to the projected figure.

According to Mr Ansah, government must expect a fight if they turn up at the meeting with the same proposal.

JoyNews/AdomNews · TUC to reject government’s salary projection in 2023 Budget
“There is no way Organised Labour is also going to accept what has been put in the budget. Well, if the government has made up its mind that it is the way it thinks that he can actually force down the throat of workers, then we are in for a big fight, because there is no way government can pay anything below what we are expecting,” he said.

He noted that Organised Labour will not compromise on their demand for 60% increment in their base pay.

Meanwhile, the President of the Ghana Medical Association, Dr. Justice Yankson says government has created a problem by not reaching an agreement with the labour unions earlier.

JoyNews/AdomNews · Dr Yankson on organised labour and government’s negotiations
He believes the current mess could have been prevented.

“These are some of the problems that sometimes we create for ourselves. We had a whole period in which we could have sorted these things, we waited to the last end. Now we can see that we are on a collition course, it is clear,” he said.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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Politics: Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory

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A Wenchi High Court has thrown out a petition against New Patriotic Party (NPP) legislator in the Techiman South 2020 election.

The petitioner was seeking the nullification of the poll which saw the NPP candidate, Martin Agyei Mensah Korsah, emerge victorious.

But at the hearing Wednesday, the court explained that the NDC 2020 Parliamentary candidate, Christopher Bayere, who was pursuing the matter, failed to prove the burden of petitioning.

The court was attended by some leaders of the NDC including General Secretary, Johnson Asiedu Nketia.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
He was sighted leaving the court premises a few minutes before the judgement.

The NDC Parliamentary candidate had contested the EC’s verdict which gave the NPP’s candidate victory with 49,682 votes representing 50.2 percent of the total valid votes cast, whilst the NDC’s candidate had 49,205 votes representing 49.8 percent of the total valid votes cast.

The NDC Parliamentary candidate insisted that the figures were not a true reflection of the election.

According to him, per the pink sheets of the NDC agents at each of the 267 polling stations, he garnered 50,306 votes in the Parliamentary election whilst the 1st Respondent polled 50,013 votes.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
Electoral Commission fined in 2021

In August 2021, the Electoral Commission of Ghana was fined GH¢4,000 by the court after the Court refused to grant the EC’s request for a stay of proceedings in the dispute on July 30, 2021.

Wenchi High Court throws out petition against NPP MP’s 2020 election victory
The EC’s application for a stay of proceedings was to enable it to file a motion to challenge the ruling of the Court at its previous sitting, when it granted the petitioner a motion to amend the title of the writ.

TCounsel for the EC, Emmanuel Addae said the stay of proceedings was to enable him to file supplementary statements in support of the application filed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) candidate, Mr Christopher Beyere Baasongti.

However, reacting to the EC’s stay of proceedings, the Counsel for the petitioner, Justin Teriwajah argued that the motion was frivolous and unnecessarily geared towards delaying the adjudication of the case.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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Football: Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style

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It was the much-needed win for Ghanaians who were largely sitting on tenterhooks for the final quarter of the game.

And from the reactions, after the South Koreans netted a quickfire double between the 58th and 61st minutes, something had to definitely happen.

Kudus rose to the occasion, found himself at the end of a Gideon Mensah cross and curled the ball past the goalkeeper to restore Ghana’s lead and eventually sealed the game for Black Stars.

Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style
The 68th-minute winner triggered a thunderous celebration across the country and on social media.

Despite late attempts from the Koreans, the game ended 3-2 with Ghana earning a vital win in Group H.

Asamoah Gyan’s run, Bagbin’s dance and Black Stars fans’ clean-up as fans celebrate S. Korea win in style
Alban Bagbin

The jubilation started right from Ghana’s legislative arm where the Speaker, Alban Bagbin was caught on camera dancing to one of the goals on the day from his office.

The ecstatic Speaker punched the air while clad in his Black Star jersey in the company of other officials of the House.

Asamoah Gyan runs

Former Black Stars captain, Asamoah Gyan was on punditry duty at SuperSports TV.

However, the ethics of being on a live set could not suppress his excitement when the deciding goal was scored.

Filled with elation, the former skipper run out of the set in jubilation shouting atop his voice.

His iconic goal celebration was his response when asked about his reaction to some moments of the game.

Fans in clean-up mode

Now, supporters of Japan’s national team have been earning praise in Qatar for their zeal toward cleanliness after each game.

This win seems to have presented Ghanaian fans with the opportunity to emulate this off-pitch tradition.

While many celebrated the win at full-time, other fans were seen moving boxes around to collect the waste left by their colleagues.

South Korea’s Son not in selfie mood

Another interesting sight came from an official from the Ghana dressing room posing for a selfie.

The subject Son Heung-min was almost in tears after his team lost at full-time.

Otto Addo’s side will now face Uruguay in their last game looking to secure qualification to the next stage of the competition.

Source: Myjoyonline

 

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