“If I want my cylinder to be full, I have to pay GH¢180; even the smallest size is going for about GH¢80. It never used to be so; it isn’t easy at all. I would have wished to fill my cylinder fully, but I don’t have enough money.
“The one we used at work cost us GH¢250 and that even lasts a week. If I don’t have money, I’d opt for charcoal,” she said in an interview on JoyNews’ monitored by NSEMGH,Living Standard Series on Wednesday.
For her and others who have come to re-fill their cylinders, the price of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) has become unbearably expensive and erratic.
In the last month, the price of LPG has increased at least three times.
Sylvarius Akentuna, a supervisor at Trinity Gas, is frustrated.
“For a 14.5kg cylinder, someone would come to buy only GH¢50 of gas to fill it. I mean, how? It’s because of the price increase – the price is not stable. For instance, last month the 14.5kg was around GH¢148 but recently, it has increased to GH¢152.
As of October, 2021, one could refill a gas cylinder for about GH¢7.91 per kilogramme. This means a 14.5kg cylinder could cost a little over GH¢114 to refill.
However, the price per kilogramme in March this year saw more than 23% rise.
Consumers coughed out about GH¢142 to afford the same cylinder size – further price fluctuations last month has worsened the situation.
A pump attendant, Maxwell, explained why operations changed from the scale system to the pump system.
“When we were operating the scale system, the prices were fixed; it could not be adjusted. But we had to adopt the pump system, so those who cannot afford the increment can also buy.
Sharing the cost of buying the commodity is a smart survival mode for the likes of Prince, a student at the Ghana Technology University.
He splits the cost with his roommate.
“I am here to fill my gas cylinder. We ran out some three days ago. I am currently with a roommate; he filled it with barely GH¢40 three months ago. So, I am here to fill but I couldn’t even fill it with GH¢50 because it actually takes GH¢74 to fill.”
It is increasingly becoming difficult for breadwinners to buy for dependents.
Derek is supposed to squeeze almost GH¢200 out of his income every month, to fill two 7kg cylinders for his mother.
He loves to support his mother, but he is worried about the price increases is making it difficult for him to cover the cost.
“I spent about GH¢148 to fill the two. Basically, they told me one cylinder goes for GH¢74 but one cost GH¢50 last two weeks. Today as I came, they said one is GH¢74.
“It has really affected everybody as all of us know how the economy is going – you buy something today, but return tomorrow and everything would have changed.
Supervisor Sylvarius Akentuna says the price instability is threatening the business and employment of workers.
“If the customers are not coming, where is the good for us? There is no goodness in it,” he said.
Until there is an intervention from the government on the price of gas, Deborah, Prince, Derek, and Sylvarius may turn to charcoal which could go against the government’s goal of protecting the environment.