The LPG Marketing Companies Association of Ghana has donated an amount of GH¢60,000 to the COVID-19 Trust Fund to support the fight against the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the country.
Presenting the package to government at the Ministry of Information during the regular COVID-19 press briefing, Gabriel Kumi, Vice Chairman of the LPG Marketing Companies Association of Ghana noted that the contribution is the first donation from the association and assured that there will be subsequent ones to follow.
He commended President Akufo-Addo for his swift response in fighting against the disease adding that government deserves all the support it needs to fight the disease. “We came in with our widow’s might to present to the COVID-19 fund to enable us prepare well and buy more PPE to fight the disease as well as support the government during this era,” he said.
Mr. Kumi also touched on the increment of LPG by its regulator, the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) saying the move was wrong especially during this era where the country is fighting the deadly coronavirus disease.
Earlier, the National Petroleum Authority on Wednesday, April 1, 2020, directed industry players to begin 13.5 pesewas charge on each kilogram of LPG. It also instructed Oil Marketing Companies to increase the levy on Fuel Marking Margin from three pesewas to 4.5 pesewas per litre on every product.
Although the NPA justified the move but some industry watchers have however said that both directives are unlawful and must be withdrawn with immediate effect given the impact it will have on business.
Mr. Kumi added his voice saying that the move was wrong “because this is a time where the President is giving out freebies and cutting our taxes from products and services. We were very shocked to realize that our regulator has gone ahead to increase the price of LPG by introducing a new levy.”
According to him, the LPG Association raised an alarm and appealed for what he described as ‘unwanted and nuisance’, levy to be removed.
But Minister for Energy, John Peter Amewu, later announced that the levy had been scrapped. Mr. Kumi expressed appreciation to the authorities for scraping the new levy saying: “We are very grateful that the minister has finally withdrawn the tax that NPA imposed on LPG. We believe this is a very wrong time to introduce any tax on a product such as the LPG.”
He assured that: “We are going to do everything possible to ensure that LPG is available all the time because this is the time we need LPG most and we believe every effort must be made to keep the price of LPG down. This is not the time to make money and rip Ghanaians off. This is the time to make sure necessities such as LPG are stable in prices,” he added.
He further appealed to the Minister to have a second look at the taxes on LPG to make it more affordable and accessible to every household in this era of COVID-19.