A section of commuters have expressed worry about the increment in transport fares with some describing the move as untimely.
According to them, frequent increment in fuel prices had resulted in the development and called on government to as a matter of urgency, implement measures to salvage the situation, especially when some businesses were still struggling to survive in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Transport operators in the country announced a 15 per cent increment in fares which took effect last Saturday.
In separate interviews with the Ghanaian Times over the weekend, some members of the public mentioned that frequent increment in fuel prices and transport fares had contributed to the high cost of living in Ghana.
Madam Veronica Ansah, a pupil teacher stated that her salary was reduced after schools were re-opened last year because of the loss the school incurred during the onset of the pandemic.
She said “I used to take GH¢640 as salary each month before the coronavirus issues started coming up but now our salaries have been reduced. Currently, I am paid GH¢550 because I have realised that parents are struggling to pay the fees of their wards and there are no easily available jobs I accepted the amount. The increment in transport fares will really affect me badly. Salaries are not going up but things are getting more expensive in the country by the day,” she lamented.
Mr Hamza Hamidu, a sales personnel at a supermarket in Accra indicated that people are just trying to adjust to the “new normal” so this increment in transport fares would be a very big blow to many individuals.
He stated that living standards in the country were bad and hoped that soon, authorities would take steps to address matters.
Describing the increase in transport fare as unfair, he mentioned that commercial drivers also needed to survive, adding that since fuel prices kept going high, “these drivers too cannot continue to do unprofitable work because they are not running a charity organisation. I understand the need for them to increase the fares, I also hope that salaries will be increased too.”
KwakuAcheampong, who was on a Lapaz-bound public transport to Kasoa told the Ghanaian Times that he deals in clothing and usually delivered items to his customers across Accra and the increment in fares meant that he had to also increase the amount he charges for delivery.
He feared that the new development would affect his business negatively because customers usually slowed down on orders when slight increments are made.
A commercial driver’s assistant, popularly known as mate, TawiahOsei told the paper that what he was worried about was the exchanges between him and passengers over the new fares that would continue to at least one month, until everyone gets used to it.
“These misunderstandings and daily exchanges can be very frustrating. The insults that will come at me from impatient passengers has always been my worry anytime fares are increased. I cannot wait for everyone to get used to the new prices so that I can have some peace of mind.”
“It is not even up to four hours yet, since we started work today but I have received some serious insults from some passengers already. This week will be a hot one for me,” he lamented.
A trader at the Kasoa market, Abiba Abdulai bemoaned that the hike in goods and services, following the increase in transport fares scared her.
“This will affects everything in the country as usual, so let us just accept the situation and move on with our lives. God will take care of his own,” she said.
She called on government to pay particular attention to poverty alleviation to reduce crime rate in the country.
BY RAISSA SAMBOU