Our hardships have just been increased by five percent and when we look around the only person we can blame is John Atta Mills. He promised to keep petroleum prices to the barest minimum. So why have petroleum prices been hiked? I can hear some government official blaming the increase on ‘deregulation’. “It’s all in line with the world price of crude,” they would say. “The government has nothing to do with it.”


In opposition the NDC poured venom on the Kufuor administration each time petroleum prices were increased. On numerous platforms, the then candidate Mills chastised Kufuor and his men for doing so little to cushion Ghanaians against the vicissitudes of the global oil market.

Now, President Mills and his team are not doing any better, are they? So this should definitely go down as a campaign promise President Mills has failed to deliver on. And you can’t blame him, can you?

The government deserves all the grief it’s going to get for the latest petroleum price hikes because the NDC made petroleum pricing a major campaign issue. They variously promised to bring petroleum prices down with measures including the removal some taxes. The taxes have been done away with. Yet nothing has changed and prices are almost as high as they were. It’s almost like they gave with the right hand only to turn around and take back with the left – and we are back  at square one, which is where all the petrol-induced hardship is. They couldn’t have done any differently because the reality is that there is very little any government can do to keep petroleum prices down. And that’s how government officials will try to parry the criticism that will be heaped on them for the price hikes.

All the arguments they are going to spew out about pricing formula and the like are too heavy for my fickle mind. But what I know is that Ghanaians are going to be peeved that candidate Mills wasn’t totally honest with us when he was promising to keep petroleum prices down. And I also want to know: where on earth is the Committee for Joint Action (CJA)? Any demonstrations coming up?

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