JoyNews investigations have uncovered a resurgence of hoarding and sale of premix fuel in parts of the Central and Western Regions.

Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia last year promised to digitise the distribution of government’s subsidised premix to rid the supply chain of middlemen who mostly hoard the product and sell at exorbitant prices to fishermen.

A year after the broadcast of our Hotline documentary ‘Premix Cartel’, investigative journalist Kwetey Nartey returns to the landing beaches and discovers how the middle are hijacking a product meant for poor fishermen.

The reporter visited the Elmina landing beach where he met tired-looking fishermen chatting among themselves.

“As I get close, I eavesdrop on their conversation, which was centred around the poor supply of premix fuel at the coast. Meshach Basel is a fisherman here. Irregular supply of premix fuel upsets him.

“According to him, the situation has been compounded by middlemen who are hoarding and selling the fuel at higher prices. It has become a lucrative trade for individuals who are not even fishermen,” the reporter said.

Mr Basel is not the only fisherman bothered by premix fuel hoarding in the enclave.

Kwesi is also concerned about how the premix cartels have monopolised the distribution of the fuel. He says his business is on the verge of collapse because of the high cost of the fuel.

JoyNews investigations uncover resurgence of hoarding and sale of premix fuel in parts of Central, Western Regions

A year ago, JoyNews’ Kwetey Nartey was at the Elmina landing beach to find out about the premix cartel. The team went back to check what the situation is.

He met Ebo, one of the sellers, who has pitched camp at the same structure where he was caught him on camera selling premix at exorbitant prices to fisher folks. At ¢7.50, seven gallons of premix should cost a little over ¢50.

But after interrogating the investigative journalist about the authenticity of their claims to do business with him, Ebo’s aide sold the seven gallons of premix fuel to them for ¢100.

At the Kwasi Gyan bay in Elmina, many boats have lined up. Taller and other middlemen were seen by Joy News investigators, busily selling several barrels of premix illegally.

He sold a gallon at ¢10 instead of ¢7.50, which had been approved by the government.

The team headed to the Western Region, specifically the Albert Bosomtwi-Sam Fishing Harbour. They met some men, one of which challenged another whether he is indeed a fisherman. He wanted to know why the man wants to buy premix fuel.

Although many of them are not fishermen they were busily buying the fuel in barrels.

The Joy News team met Sergio, one of the middlemen who buy the subsidised fuel, hoard and sell to the desperate fishermen. He sells the yellow gallon at ¢100.

“Fifteen minutes drive from the harbour, we met Ekow at Mempeasem. He is adulterating government premix fuel with another substance.

At his end, he sells a gallon of premix at ¢12. I asked him why he was mixing the fuel with another colour.

The story is different in Accra where the government has commenced digitising the distribution of premix like Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia promised.

Without a card identifying a buyer as a fisherman one can’t buy premix fuel here.

Emmanuel Odartey is a fisherman. He says the new system is a departure from the past where they struggled to acquire the fuel.

Administrator for the National Premix Fuel Secretariat, Nana Abrokwa Asare confirmed to the reporter government has approved the digitisation process.

He said government will digitise the distribution of premix fuel on all landing beaches.

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