Trotro fares up by 44% instead of 19%: Check the wrong calculation. Trotro fares have increased by 44% if you care to know and this is causing a lot of dissatisfaction among patrons of public transport nationwide. The transport fare increase announced was 19 per cent but due to a lack of careful analysis of the new fuel price increase, Ghanaians are paying 44% thus 25% more. The transport operators decided to do the unthinkable by increasing a new transport fare which was just two days old by another 20 per cent.
Every Ghanaian is feeling the heat resulting from a depreciated cedi, increased fuel prices and food prices which have hit the highest ever and are currently estimated to be 122% as of September.
Lorry fares were increased by 19 per cent and within 72 hours, drivers and transport unions increased the new fares by another 20% which adds up to 39% (19+20) increase by their own calculation but the reality is that they increased it by 44% and we are all suffering because the Transport Ministry has failed to call them to order.
What this means is that if your lorry fare was Ghs5.00 before the first increase, you should be paying (Ghs5.00 * 1.19) which gives us a new fare of GHS5.95. But, the new GHS5.95 transport fare was also increased by another 20% thus (5.95 * 1.20) after the second increase which translates into Gha7.15 given a new transport fare of GH7.20. Thus a cumulative increase of Ghs2.20 (7.20-5.00). This translates into a 44% increase in transport fares (2.2÷5)*100%.
The random increase in fuel prices and the wrong mathematical calculations of transport fares by private transport operators is making ordinary Ghanaians suffer and more deafening is the silence of the government and the Transport Ministry. If the fuel prices at the pumps do not stabilise, Trotro operators will not hesitate to increase fares again.
However, the more worrying reason why the new lorry fare must be reviewed downward is that when the transport unions increased the lory by 19%, they decided to increase the new lorry fare also by another 20% instead of scraping the 19% and then increase the original price by say 25%. This would have been the best since the increase would have been calculated on the old fare especially when the new one was increased just two days before the current one but that was not the case.
Ghanaians have had to suffer the harsh realities of the government’s failure to stabilise fuel prices or subsidize and its silence on the 44% increase in transport fares. Again, the free for all decision by private transport operators who decided to increase lorry fares by another 20 per cent have caused a lot of frustration, fights and quarrels in all Trotros in the country.
The increased fuel prices at the pumps and the upward increase in lorry fares have always had multiple effects on the prices of goods and services. A passenger lost his life of Ghs2.00 change and many have fought drivers mates just to express the frustration imposed on them by the mismanaged economy and the global crisis within the Ghanaian economy.
Unfortunately, the government through the Transport Ministry has failed to react to the increased fares. The foreign exchange rates are expected to shoot up as the festive season approaches, more imports will be coming into the country as shoppers prefer exotic products of all kinds for the Christmas and New year holiday celebrations.
The taste for such foreign goods, in the face of the continuous depreciation of the cedi, will mean higher prices of goods and services. Should fuel prices which have already crossed the 17Ghs and 23Ghs mark for petrol and diesel go up further, private transport operators will have no option to increase lorry fares again.
We call on the Transport Ministry and government to bring transport operators to order if not, they will grow wings that will be difficult to clip should nothing be done and fuel prices go up again.
Source: Wisdom Hammond