There are chaotic scenes in parts of Ghana as commercial drivers begin an indefinite strike.
The Coalition of Commercial Transport Owners declared the nationwide strike as part of measures to compel the government to scrap some taxes on fuel to enable reduction at the pumps.
According to the Coalition, the government for the past two weeks has failed to heed their calls for some taxes to be scrapped off hence the decision to embark on the sit-down strike.
More than ten unions have joined the strike including the Ghana Private Road and Transport Union (GPRTU), Association of Tipper Truck Drivers, Harbor Transport Owners, Ghana National Cargo Transport Association, Ghana Committed Drivers Association, Concerned Drivers Association, Digital Drivers and Commercial motorbike riders, popularly referred to as Okada.
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Reports from the capital Accra and other parts of the country revealed that the strike has left scores of passengers stranded.
In some situations, passengers who boarded vehicles in the early hours of the day have been forced to alight, leaving them with no other option than to trek to their various destinations.
“We don’t know what to do now. They forced us to get down from the vehicle after we have already paid our fares. Now we can only walk or fly. The situation is unbearable” one passenger said.
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Strike to persist
Spokesperson for the drivers Abass Imoro noted that the government must find a lasting solution to the hikes in fuel prices.
“We started this crusade for about two weeks now, we have applied all humble measures to this. Each time we come out with our program, government authority steps in, oh wait, give us time then we will reverse whatever decision we have taken.
Not once, not twice but thrice or four times hence our people started accusing us that we are not good leaders,” he said.
The aggrieved transport operators are demanding that government to scrap off taxes like the Price Stabilization and Recovery Levy, Special Petroleum Tax, the Energy Recovery Debt Levy and the Sanitation levy.
They have warned that the industrial action will take place until the government is ready to engage the group for a lasting solution moving forward.