The Ghana LPG Operators Association(GLiPGOA) , have called on government to find a better safety solution to gas explosion rather than the introduction of the Cylinder Recirculation Model (CRM) policy.
According to the Association, there has not been any proven report of LPG cylinder explosion in the country as government sought to blame them for the numerous gas explosion in the country in recent time.
Mr Nicholas Issaka Gbana, spokesperson for the Association made the call during Media encounter on development on the Government ‘s LPG cylinder recirculation model policy in Accra yesterday.
“We haven’t had explosions at stations because we have been filling cylinders. There have been explosions at home because of cylinders but the large explosions never happened because a cylinder was being filled,” he argued.
He noted that, even though they were not against measures in regulating their activities, the CRM was not the best and that it rather an attempt to take them out of business.
The GLiPGOA argued that, almost all the major gas explosions recorded in the country occurred at the discharging points and not when filing cylinders at the stations.
Issaka Gbana said the Cylinder Recirculation Model policy has been pushed by the Global LPG Partnership which has been lobbying governments in Africa since 2011.
‘The previous government has come trying to do CRM but they dropped it because some of the issues we raised. Somehow, this government says it wants to do it, but the implementation is a planned agenda,’ he alleged.
The implementation of the CRM was proposed by the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) to ensure that LPG filling points are sited out of densely populated areas and commercial centres. But the operators say, the policy is an already planned agenda by the NPA
At least seven people were confirmed dead, with 134 others injured following a gas leakage which led to a gas explosion at MANSCO Gas Filling Station at Atomic junction near Madina.
Government after the explosion of MANSCO Gas Filling Station at Atomic Junction, decided to implement the cylinder re-circulation programme.
The plan is to stop LPG outlets from filling empty gas cylinders as part of measures to stop gas explosions.
LPG bottling plants are to be set up outside of residentially and commercial areas for them to fill cylinders for sale at the retail outlets.
However the operators said they are not against government setting up bottling plants to sell already filled LPG cylinders to consumers but they should not be forced to be distributors or sale agents.
They further claimed that, should government ignore their concerns and push on for the implementation of the CRM policy, it would render about 7,000 people jobless.
The association added that the module would destroy the gas retail industry they have built over the last 25 years.
They also accused the government of conniving with some foreign investors to implement the program and eventually kick them out of business.
The Ghana LPG operators also questioned the rush in implementing CRM when government was yet to come out with the report as to cause of gas explosion at Atomic junction near Madina.
Source: the republic news online.com/Felix Engsalige Nyaaba