Wenchi drivers and travelers lock horns over new fares

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Drivers Kadjebi
Drivers Kadjebi

There was a misunderstanding over new lorry fares at the Wenchi Lorry Station in the Bono Region between commercial drivers and travellers that created a scene in the early hours of Tuesday.

Visibly angry passengers traveling to parts of the country were stranded for hours after all the commercial drivers refused to ply the various routes.

Tempers flared up when the drivers imposed new lorry fares, which the passengers refused to pay, and were thus stranded at the station for hours.

According to the drivers, they could not wait any longer for the official announcement of transport fares because of the increase in petroleum prices in the country.

Officials of the Wenchi Municipal branch of the Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) however, intervened to calm down nerves.

As at the time of filing this report, traveling activities in the municipality had resumed, but taxis for instance charged GhC35 from Wenchi to Sunyani, instead of GhC25

The drivers operating from Wenchi to Kumasi also charged GHS 65 instead of the GHS 55 fare.

Some of the passengers who said they could not afford to pay the new lorry fares were, however, sighted bargaining with the drivers.

But others told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in an interview that they felt “the lorry fares were exorbitant.”

They therefore appealed to the government to engage the transport unions and other relevant stakeholders for standard and reasonable transport fares in the interest of both drivers and passengers.

“The lorry fares are too much. Though we all understand the situation, the drivers are cheating us, and something must be done urgently,” John Abass, a teacher traveling from Wenchi to Sunyani stated.

Another passenger, Madam Ama Konadu, a yam seller regretted that the new lorry fares had affected luggage charges too by 100 per cent and called on the GPRTU to intervene for reduction of the luggage charges.

“I am traveling to sell the yams at the Nana Bosoma Central Market in Sunyani, but I can’t afford to pay the charges for the yams because the amount is too outrageous,” she said.

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