Government asked to salvage manufacturing sector

Government has been asked to impress upon the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) to reverse the new utility tariffs to salvage the manufacturing sector from collapse.

The Central Region branch of the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union (ICU), made the call at emergency meeting, in Cape Coast on Wednesday.

It was contained in a resolution adopted by the National Executive Council of the ICU on the new tariffs and read by Senior Industrial Relations Officer, Mr Ahmed Ali.

The Union called for the immediate suspension of the new tariffs, saying that industries would be seriously affected if nothing was done about the situation.

It expressed concern about the total withdrawal of Government subsidies on utility tariffs, adding that after the removal, the impression created was that the increases were done by the PURC “which is suppose to be an independent body”.

The resolution said “the unrealistic increases in the tariffs would undoubtedly create multi-faceted difficulties for industries and domestic consumers, which will lead to importation of cheap goods from other countries and result in the closing down of local industries.”

It said that the Union was not against increase in utility tariffs per se but there should be a substantive reduction in the tariffs.

The Union appealed to Government to listen to the views of workers on the increase to save the livelihood of thousands of families which are already impoverished.

The ICU had issued an ultimatum to Government to act quickly, latest by July 29 or it would embark on a nationwide demonstration.

Source: GNA

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