General News of 2014-07-10

Another fuel shortage looms

Ghanaians should be bracing up for another round of fuel shortage next week. That's according to the Member of Parliament for Okaikoi Central, Yaw Boamah.
According to the MP, government's inability to pay strangling debts owed the Bulk Oil Distributors has left them exposed and incapable of buying fuel for distribution.
Speaking to Joy News' Parliamentary Correspondent Elton John Brobbey, the MP claimed to have intercepted a letter from the Bulk Oil Distributors addressed to the Finance Minister and to President John Mahama, lamenting the state of indebtedness owed the distributors.
Between 2011-2013 a total of $1.325 billion was incurred as a result of government's failure to pay fuel subsidies, Brobbey quoted the letter as saying.
For the first half of the year an amount of $300 million with an additional ¢84 million is said to be owed in subsidies to the Bulk Oil Distributors.
The banks have withdrawn funding support to the distributors and this has affected them greatly.
Yaw Boamah is therefore warning of a looming fuel shortage next week.
The country, only weeks ago, suffered an acute fuel shortage which led to chaos at filling stations across the country.
Queues developed at the stations with some purchasing the fuel in yellow gallons only to resell it at exorbitant prices.
The shortage was blamed on government's debts of about GH¢1.8 billion to bulk oil distribution companies (BDCs)
Just last week the president John Mahama ordered the payment of $60 million to defray part of the debt owed the distributors.
That led to the release of some fuel products to the pumps. Just when the situation appeared to be stabilising, the Okaikoi Central MP said the country is not out of the woods yet and the situation may get even worse next week.
Checks by Joy News reporters at the various filling stations in Accra indicate that some stations are already suffering some amount of shortages while others are not.