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BY EURIDICE NZIOKA,NAIROBI,15TH JAN 2018-Just a day after the energy regulatory commission (ECR ) reviewed prices of of fule upwards,the Central Organisation of Trade Unions (Cotu) has urged the government to intervene and bring the prices within the affodable margins for common mwanachi.
In a statement sent to newsrooms Cotu Secretary-General Francis Atwoli i has warned that if the government has no capacity to intervene and lower the prices, the workers union through its national delegates’ conference maby be forced to demand for higher wages to compensate for the high prices of essential commodities.
“We are tired of reports of increase in oil and petroleum costs every month as fuel prices increase too. These increases have spiral effects since the cost of production for business increases too. Further, the increase in cost of energy triggers inflation thus lowering the purchasing power of workers,” Mr Atwoli said.
“Failure by the government to cushion workers against this increases, then let it be prepared for direct confrontation from workers in demand for pay increase from the entire labour fraternity and all sectors of the economy,” added Mr Atwoli.
Cotu wants the government to cushion workers who bear the cost of increased fares as public transport normally takes advantage of the increase in fuel prices to hike fares.
Mr Atwoli urged the government to live up to its promise of provision of cheap energy saying stability in oil and petrol prices is essential for economic growth.
The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) on Sunday revised upwards the maximum cost of fuel drivers will pay at the pump.
According to the monthly review, super petrol will retail at Sh106.30 in Nairobi after a Sh2.13 increase, diesel goes up by Sh2.39 and kerosene also goes up by Sh3.36.
The upward adjustment in pricing will see kerosene, which is largely used by the urban poor and rural households, retail at Sh72.01 per litre in Mombasa, Sh74.78 in Nairobi, Sh75.62 in Nakuru, Sh76.69 in Eldoret and Kisumu, Sh78. 77 in Isebania and Sh88.59 in Mandera for the next one month.
It is the fifth month in a row that ERC has raised the maximum pump prices in the country, making it difficult for Kenyans to manage considering the the high cost of living already being experienced.