The New Patriotic Party (NPP) has expressed its dismay at the current shortage of petroleum products in the country.
The party said “In the past few weeks there had been several rumours that the country was running out of petroleum products. There have been the usual denials. But it is official now. The newspapers have reported it.”
A statement signed by Nana Akomea, Minority Ranking Member on Communications, said the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) has confirmed the shortage and if further evidence was required, the queues at the filling stations testified to the dire nature of the situation
It said according to TOR management, at the time when the NPP administration was handing over to the incoming NDC administration, the country had supplies that could last up to the end of March and there was “Laycan” for April and May.
The statement wondered why this sudden turn of events and said according to TOR this was partly explained by the fact that the RFCC has broken down adding “But why should this breakdown lead to a shortage in supply.”
It said the regime of deregulation implemented by the NPP Government ensured that the OMCs supplied petroleum products to the markets and there was no limit on how much oil was imported.
The statement said “TOR only imports and refines crude and the fact that the RFCC has broken should not create these shortages.”
It said in the campaign period close to the 2008 Election, the then presidential candidate Professor Evans Atta Mills promised that if elected as President of Ghana, he would reduce petrol prices drastically but after the elections, the government of President Mills has not reduced the price of petrol.
The statement said “He has not even maintained the price of petrol. The government, six months in office, has increased the price of petrol by 35 per cent. They have not been able to tell us why at 65 dollars per barrel of crude, gasoline should be selling at 51,000 cedis. Ghanaians have been reeling in shock.”
It said the last four days from July 5 have seen the re-emergence of petrol queues in the city of Accra and elsewhere.
The statement said “Ghanaians are once again being subjected to the terrible trauma of queuing in their vehicles. This is an experience which has long been forgotten.”
It said within six months of President Mills administration and having dismantled the existing administration of TOR this harrowing experience was back.
The statement said when crude oil sold at all time high of 147 dollars per barrel, the NPP government maintained a steady flow of petroleum products.
The NPP urged the government to act without delay to relieve the country of this terrible plight.
The statement said if the promise of reducing petrol price has been broken, the suffering of Ghanaians due to the 35 per cent increase in fuel price should not be increased through the queuing for petrol.