Business News of 2014-01-09

Sunyani Municipal Assembly increases rates

Mr Kwasi Oppong-Ababio, Sunyani Municipal Chief Executive has announced increases in rates charged by the assembly due to its huge expenditure last year.

He explained that it would spend about GH¢58,000.00 to replace bulbs and other electrical gadgets in the Municipality this year, adding, “The assembly’s expenditure has increased and has become necessary to increase rates to meet the aspirations of the people.”

Mr Oppong-Ababio announced this while addressing executives and traders from the Sunyani Market in Sunyani.

Last week some traders marched through the principal streets to the assembly to protest against increase in the daily market toll from 30Gp to 50Gp.

The 200 traders wore red bands on their necks, heads and arms beating used cans and sang dirges along.

The traders refused to pay the toll which became effective on Thursday, January 2, the first working day of the year 2014, saying they were not given prior notice.

Madam Margaret Amankwaa, Spokesperson for the traders said they refused to pay because they were not informed, adding that, the toll was increased from 20Gp to 30Gp sometime last year and questioned the further increase.

She pointed out that the assembly collected daily tolls but there had not been any improvement at the market.

She said they were unable to sell their wares when it rained, and added that the situation prevented customers from patronizing their wares.

“There are no urinals and toilet facilities at the market, traders have to expose themselves or hide under tables to urinate in cans and pour them into gutters at the market, making the place to stink, therefore, there is no need for the increase in the toll,” she added.

Mr Oppong-Ababio assured traders that all their grievances would be addressed in due time.

He said the assembly’s Technical Committee would undertake feasibility studies at the market to access the situation for necessary measures to improve conditions there.

He advised the traders to pay the new tolls which he said did not only affect them but also operators of hotels, fuel stations and commercial vehicles.

Ghana News Agency visited the market and realized that the traders were paying the new tolls but others expressed disappointment about their executives who they said could not negotiate for tolls review or suspension.