Civil Society Threaten Civil Disobedience If Fuel Prices Are Increased
By Ibrahim Sangba
The Director of Native Consortium and Research Centre (NCRC) Edmond Abu Jr. has told NewsWatch that if the government allows oil marketers to create artificial Scarcity leading to a hike in the pump price of fuel, he will organise a massive protest.
NCRC is a civil society organisation whose main thematic area is economic justice issues and giving voice to the voiceless and the disadvantaged.
Its Director, Edmond Abu Jr. has now become a household name in affairs of fuel prices and their impact on poor people.
In early 2018, he was arrested by Police when he tried to organise a demonstration against a proposed increase in the pump price of fuel.
“These are wicked Sierra Leoneans who are manipulating the prices of fuel for their selfish interest as against the comfort of the masses. I do not care what the consequences may be”
Mr. Abu also called on the Police and the Ministry of Transport to monitor unpatriotic and mischievous drivers who are now having a field day by charging more for shorter distances, creating discomfort for ordinary citizens.
He revealed that his institution has been fighting this cause for far too long but past and present governments have not paid much attention and that is why he said, they are now running out of patience.
“We were hoping that the Petroleum Regulatory Agency (PRA) and the Trade Ministry would engage with us to proffer solutions on this but they woefully failed to have any discussion with us” he lamented.
Mr. Abu also reiterated that their organisation is not oblivious of the fact that the tension in the middle east might cause some shortages but that may not necessarily be the reason for a price increase in our own context.
Edmond Abu applauded President Bio for the bold step he took against the oil marketers and dealers in December last year as part of his disciplinary action to curb racketeering but proposed that the government make the oil market open for all interested players to get on board because according to him, when multiple players are involved there will be competition and standards will improve.