Cement Distributors Association in the three northern region is calling on the chief of Bupei, Bupei-Wura to rescind the 25 pesewas charge he imposed on each cement bag transported at Bupei Savanna Diamond cement factory.
The association says the Bupei Wura's decision to impose a levy will threaten their business and pleaded that he rescinds his decision. The distributors are also calling on government to impress on the chief to reverse his earlier decision which they say could conceivably increase the price of cement in the three regions.
At a press conference in Tamale on Monday, the cement distributors decried the levy describing it as strange, pointing out that they have been in the cement distribution business for years and have never seen anything like it.
The Bupei-Wura, the distributors alleged, is threatening to prevent them from transporting their cement from Bupei Savanna Diamond cement factory. "Until the setting up of the factory in Bupei, most of our members were transporting cement from elsewhere in the country without such a levy," Mr. Yakubu Abdul Rahman told the press.
The distributors said the Buipe-Wura claims the levy was on vehicles transporting the cement but not on cement. But the distributors maintain the levy will automatically reflect on the cost of cement.
To ease matters, the distributors said they have drawn the attention of government through the regional minister to the looming increase in the price of cement and hope that the minister's intervention will be respected.
According to the cement distributors, they would rather have a complete scrapping of the the levy and not a reduction. The distributors explained that the cement factories pay royalties to the traditional authorities and local government through the district assemblies which are indirectly levied on goods.
We consider this levy as double taxation which has the potential of increasing the price of cement to 0.25%.