Liberia: Gas Price Hike Causing Transportation Woes in Southeast

Reports from the southeastern part of the small West African country of Liberia reveal that scores of commercial drivers, motorcyclists and ‘keke’ riders have decided to park their vehicles and motorbikes if nothing is done to reduce the hike in the price of gasoline on the local market.

Political Map of Liberia
Political Map of Liberia

According to the information gathered by a correspondent of West African Journal Magazine, there is a serious shortage of gasoline in the far southeast  sub-political sub-division of Maryland County bordering Cote d’Ivoire that has caused an increase in the price of gasoline; as a result, the price of gasoline has increased from $400LD ($3.22 USD) to $600LD ($4.83 USD) per gallon while half gallon is being sold for $300LD ($3.22 USD).

The shortage of gasoline on the Liberian market has caused commercial drivers, motorcyclists union to convene meetings amongst themselves to discuss the current situation which has led to the rapid increase in the prices of various commodities especially Liberia’s staple food, rice.

During the meetings, both transportation unions called on the government of Liberia and the petrol dealers in the county to reduce the gasoline price from $600LD ($4.83 USD) to $400LD $3.22 USD) in order to reduce transport fares and other basic commodities.

Following the meeting, a motorcyclists told our reporter that their request was accepted by one of the filing stations management who agreed but urged that the request be made available to all parties so that they can reach a decision in the best interest of the dealers.

Gas Sold In Jars In Liberia
Gas Sold In Jars In Liberia

With the hike in the price of gasoline in the sub-political division, commuters are now paying $300LD ($3.22 USD) from city of Harper to Pleebo, while others are paying $75LD (.60 USD) from Central Harper to the Tubman University (TU) Campus in the
county.

The motorcyclists have warned that they will park their equipment if the price of gasoline remains high.
“The gasoline price has increased, and we are not getting any profit from the round town traffic,” William Hinneh, a motorcyclists said.

Meanwhile, citizens of Maryland County are calling on the new national government to address the issue of transportation fare hike in and the price of gasoline because this is causing serious economic hardship in the county as business people are using this situation to exploit them.

Ministry of Finance of Liberia logo
Ministry of Finance of Liberia logo

In an interview with a local businessman only identified as Daniel, he said to travel to other parts of the county has become difficult because of the increase in the price of gasoline. He said the hike in the price of petroleum has caused business owners in the county to suffer serious deficits.

The Weah administration has not laid out an economic plan to address the decline of the Liberian dollar (LD) against the US dollar. The current rate of exchange between the Liberian dollar and the US dollar is $124 LD – $1.00 USD.

By Lincoln Barcon reporting from Monrovia, Liberia

Published by

West African Journal Magazine

The West African Journal was a major magazine publication in the United States with a focus on the Mano River region and West Africa sub-region during the civil crises in Liberia and neighboring countries during the decades of the 1990s. This was the period when many citizens and others in the sub-region were fleeing their homeland due to conflicts, and the magazine was a reliable source of information covering developments in the region and in the Diaspora.  However, the magazine suspended publication several years ago but is now back. It is, therefore, delightful that The West African Journal has been reactivated. The print edition of the magazine, to be published monthly and distributed in the United States, West Africa, and other parts of the world, will provide analysis of the major events of the period under review. Due to challenges relating to availability of reading materials in the sub-region, a few hundred copies of every edition of the magazine will be distributed free of charge to libraries and reading rooms at schools and institutions of higher learning in the sub-West Africa sub-region. The Journal covers government/politics, economics/international trade/investment and partnerships, women's issues, showcase of tourism and historic attractions in West Africa in particular, and Africa in general, as well as cover the Diaspora, entrepreneurship, among others. The Journal also taps into growing interest in the Unites States regarding resource-rich Africa as the next frontier for global economic progress amid an increasing global competition for access to the continent’s abundant natural resources. The magazine will regularly cover bilateral and multilateral partnerships between the US/multinational agencies and Africa/individual African countries. More importantly, in considering the danger of Climate Change and Global Warming, The Journal serves as a strong and unrelenting advocate to create international awareness regarding Climate Change, especially how West African countries and the African Continent as a whole are being negatively impacted. Through its environmental coverage, The Journal promotes education and awareness for people to be empowered. Our experienced team of editors, reporters and feature writers are excited to bring the stories that impact politics, finance, economy, arts, health, education, climate change, women and youth issues in Africa today. Contact The West African Journal is registered and published in Washington, D.C., U.S.A. Plans are underway to open a bureau office in Liberia, from which operations in other West African countries will be coordinated. Our journalists, who bring decades of high engagement of news and reportage, include former BBC veteran correspondent Isaac D.E. Bantu, former Daily Observer Features Editor and publisher of the West African Journal Joe S. Kappia, and Pana Press Editor Tepitapia K. Sannah, and respected Photo journalist and editor Gregory Stemn. These experienced and internationally-respected journalists ensure a high standard of professional journalism. Information and inquiries for The West African Journal should be directed to the following: Editor-in-Chief; Email: WestAfricanJournalMagazine@gmail.com Isaac D.E. Bantu: Publishing Partner; Email: WestAfricanJournalMagazine@gmail.com Mailing Address: P.O. Box 55053, Washington, D.C. 20040-5053 USA Thank you. Managing Editor