31.03.2005 General News

Mills attacks leadership of TUC for inaction

31.03.2005 LISTEN

Ho, March 31, GNA- Professor John Evans Atta Mills, Election 2004 Presidential Candidate of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), has expressed misgivings about the inaction of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) to Government's imposition of economic hardship on Ghanaians.

He said, "something was amiss" if leaders of the TUC, whose job it was to protect the interest of workers would look on from the windows of their air-conditioned offices at people marching on the streets for the review of oil prices.

Prof. Mills was addressing scores of people draped in red and carrying miniature national flags after almost three hours street protest march, dubbed: "Wahala Three", against the recent 50 per cent hike in the prices of petroleum products in Ho on Thursday.

He said he was speaking as a concerned citizen who appreciated the objective of the Committee for Joint Action (CJA), organisers of the protest marches which began in Accra, to mobilise Ghanaians against the oil prices.

He said the protest marches would continue until Government heard the voice of the people, adding if the Government would boast from rooftops that it had exceeded revenue targets why then was there the need to increase taxes on fuel?

Professor Mills light-heartedly told the Police personnel mobilised to keep order that their assignment was an opportunity for them to exercise their bodies, practice crowd control and also be part of the protest.

"We are in the streets because of you and next time round we would put you in the middle of the protest march and guard you," he said, attracting cheers from the protestors who were generally well behaved except a few of them who attempted to attack the heavily fortified Regional Secretariat of the ruling New Patriotic Party.

Alhaji Ahmed Ramadan, a Member of the CJA and an Executive member of the Peoples National Convention asked why the Kufuor Administration yielded to the dictates of the International Monetary Fund to increase the prices of fuel?

Mr Danny Ofori Atta of the EAGLE Party said the CJA was not out to topple the Government but make it more innovative.

Madam Emelia Arthur an Executive of the National Reform Party said the CJA would speak out against what it thought were wrong things being done by the Government stating that, "what was wrong yesterday is still wrong today".

Mr Modestus Ahiable, Volta Regional Chairman of the NDC slammed the Kufour Administration for politicising the poverty alleviation credit scheme.

Mr Manfred Nuku-Dei, the Regional Coordinator of the CJA said he was impressed at the heavy turnout of the protestors, which he estimated to be around 3,000.

He said the participation was very encouraging for a working day in Ho.

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