Commercial drivers in Sekondi Takoradi are appealing to Government and Ghana Private Road Transport Union(GPRTU) to consider a reduction in fuel prices and daily sales target respectively before calling on drivers to reduce the number of passengers on board per a trip amid Coronavirus pandemic.
This comes in the wake of rumours that the GPRTU will soon be calling on commercial drivers to reduce the number of passengers on board as well as concerns by the general public over impending danger in commercial vehicles due to the current disregard for social distancing.
Some of the commercial drivers in an exclusive interview with beachfmoniline admitted that the country is not in ordinary times therefore it behoves them to also play their part in the quest to promote social distancing to prevent the spread of Covid-19, but stakeholders must also take their concerns into consideration.
The major concerns that were expressed by the Commercial drivers included; the need for stakeholders to reduce price of fuel and sales target or passengers must share the cost of empty seats among themselves.
A Taxi driver by name Kweku at the Anaji Taxi station was of the view that significant reduction in price of fuel could enable them to also reduce the number of passengers on board .
“In the mean time we cannot reduce the transport cost but the best we can do is to provide running water and hand sanitizers to be used before allowing passengers entry. In the worst case seniro government would have to reduce price of the fuel significantly so that we can also reduce the number of passengers on board”
Kweysley a trotro driver at KojoKrom Trotro Station shares the view that reducing passengers on board without corresponding reduction in fuel price will have a tole on their finances
”These days the number of passenger who board our vehicles have reduced drastically so if I have to go to New Takoradi by reducing my passengers by two, I cannot cover the cost of my diesel and this is worrying. I have been here since 11 am, I can only go on three trips maximum for a day, how can I make good sales. We want government to reduce prices of fuel otherwise we cannot adhered to government directive”.
A driver by name “Survival” from Effiakuma 9 station was of the view that the best drivers could do is to reduce the number of passengers by 3 and transfer the cost of the 4th passenger to be bared by all the passengers.
“we cannot reduce the transport fair because of the Coronavirus but we can reduce the number of passenger so that passengers can bare the cost of the 4th passenger. If government reduces price of fuel, price of insurance and spare parts will not change and such a move will be cos 90.
We expect stakeholders to speak with the passengers to understand and pay the extra seat. Fore example the transport cost from Affiakuma to Anaji is currently GH 2, so we can decide the take 3 passengers in all so that each passeger can pay GH 2.5″.
Story by Kwame Offei