Tanker drivers embark on sit down strike

By Laudia Sawer, GNA   

Tema, Sept. 24, GNA – Fuel tanker drivers
operating at the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) on Monday embarked on a sit down
strike to back their pressure on the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) to
enforce the use of the loading manual.

The drivers, numbering over 100, parked their
tankers and gathered at the forecourt of the Refinery to express their
displeasure at the refusal of some Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) to go
strictly to the loading and discharging manual.

Some of the aggrieved drivers prevented some
gas tanker drivers from loading products even though they (gas drivers) refused
to join the demonstration.

Police personnel, who were assigned to protect
the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), fired tear gas at the protestors resulting in
degrees of injury among them.

Mr George Nyaunu, Chairman of the Tanker
Drivers Association, explained to the media that the refusal of the OMCs to
properly use the manual was causing them their full salaries at the end of the
month.

Mr Nyaunu explained that even though the
manual required for the necessary measurement and details of products to be
taken before discharging existed, some OMCs preferred to measure their shortage
from the underground tankers.

He noted that since some of the tankers were
located in water-logged areas, the tanks were not firmly placed hence constant
shaking of the tanks and evaporation led to measurements which varied from what
they discharged.

He added that with the manual, when there was
a shortage at the top, they were expected to top it up, after determining the
variances.

According to him, even though the OMCs used
the underground shortage, the tanker owners often used that wrong measurement
to deduct the shortage from their salaries.

“If you go on four or five trips in a month
and every station records a shortage of about 200 litres, it would be
calculated, multiplied and you end up even owing the transporter,” he said.

They therefore called on the NPA to educate
all stakeholders on the 2014 manual to ensure that the loading and discharging
procedures were dully followed.

GNA

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