Regional News of 2014-08-15

Fuel shortage hits Sekondi Takoradi

The Sekondi Takoradi metropolis has been hit with fuel shortage forcing motorists to form long queues to buy a few gallons of the product.

Local fishermen are also struggling to get supplies of premix fuel for their operations.

Some industry sources predicted the imminent shortage of premix fuel, but Sekondi Takoradi has already run out of diesel.

Checks at the Total filling station at the Nkrumah Roundabout, Takoradi’s capital city, revealed that they were also struggling to secure adequate supplies of the commodity.

“The situation is very bad, actually at the moment we are the only people having diesel now. It has made all the pressure to be on us. We requested for about 54000 liters, they only gave us 18,000 liters and possibly it would finish by 6 o’clock,” the Supervisor of the Total Filling station, Emmanuel Monnie, told Paragon FM.

Mr Monnie was not sure when the next supply would be available.

“We don’t know when the next supply would come, it can be today, tomorrow or even Sunday. Total do supply us with the fuel from Tema because it is a Total Station, What we been hearing is that the Tankers are at anchorage at Tema Habour, but they are waiting for the government to pay some money before they can discharge,” he stated.

At the Axim Road and the Old John Sarbah Road Shell fuel stations have all run out of fuel.

Industry sources have also revealed that the commercial banks have refused to issue letters of credit (LCs) to pre-finance the importation of the commodity.

Deputy Minister of Energy in charge of Petroleum, Benjamin S.K. Dagadu, had assured the public that a “substantial amount of money” will be released to the Bulk Oil Distribution Companies (BDCs) to supply premix fuel onto the market.

Speaking to the Daily Graphic newspaper, Mr Dagadu admitted that government was hugely indebted to the BDCs.

He however stated that there were plans to release funds to the BDCs for them to secure the needed stock for the market to avert any shortage.

He declined to state the exact amount to be released to compensate the BDCs to deliver the supplies.

According to the sources, the company responsible for lifting premix fuel would need Ghc 40 million to lift the product, but government is willing to pay only Ghc10 million.

A supervisor at the Goil fuel station revealed that the BDCs are anticipating an increase in the prices of petroleum products.

It is too early to determine the impact of the shortage on the local economy.

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