The Volta Lake Transport Company Limited (VLTC), operators of passenger vessels, cargo ships and barges on River and Lake Volta, has indicated that the revenue of the company has dropped drastically in the past few days due to the impact of Coronavirus outbreak.
According to Captain Jonathan Sey, Ferryman of MV Yapei Queen, the operations of the company between Dambai in the Oti region and Kpandai in the Northern region has in the past few days been based on purely humanitarian reasons as revenue has dropped below 70 percent.
“Traffic has dropped drastically from about 1,000 to 1,500 to below 200 passengers per day. We have reduced our ferry trips from seven to four and sometimes three a day and operating only one of the two barges. Today, for instance, we have embarked on three ferries already but the number is less than 100 and that is the seriousness of the impact.
However, management seeks to lessen the hardship of local communities and that is why we are still operating. This is because if we stop operating, the goods and harvest of farmers in the local communities will go waste as there will be no means for them to transport the goods to the market centers,” he said.
Captain Sey, made this statement when the vector team of Zoomlion Company Limited carried out a disinfection exercise in the Oti Region, went on board to disinfect the barges.
It is worth noting that most communities at both sides of the river are farming communities who use the services of the company daily to cross the water for their farming and trading activities amongst others.
Minister of Oti Region, Kwasi Owusu Yeboah, in response to the challenge of the company, noted that the municipality is aware of the challenge posed by the COVID-19 lockdown on the company’s operations and will put in place measures that will help the company to keep operating as a critical service provider to the economy of the communities in his region.