CPC workers to file FR seeking fuel formula
The Ceylon Petroleum Cooperation Common Workers Union (CPCCWU) yesterday (15) stressed that if the Government continues to shun publishing the fuel price formula to the public, they will shortly file a fundamental rights petition against the Government on charges of fleecing the public after having hoodwinked them.
From the fuel price formula formulated based on the Singapore flat price the Government has imposed a Rs 71 tax per a petrol litre, but the CPCCWU emphasized that the said petition will be filed against the Government for having failed to enlighten the masses on the issue.
“This is daylight robbery. The fuel consumers are unaware that when they purchase a litre of petrol, the Government levies a Rs 71 tax on it. The people have a moral right to be aware of it. What we are saying is that the carrying out of this levying of the tax should be done after having briefed the people. This is nothing but picking the peoples’ pockets on the sly,” said the Secretary of CPCCWU representing the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, Janaka Rajakaruna.
He added that they will be naming the Minister of Finance, the Minister of Petroleum Resources Development and the entire Cabinet of Ministers as respondents in the petition.
They further claimed that though already three months had lapsed, the Ministry of Finance had not responded positively to appeals made through the Right to Information Act (RTI) demanding the publication of the fuel price formula.
He pointed out that Minister of Finance Mangala Samaraweera who also functions as the Minister of Mass Media had intentionally and seriously violated the RTI.
“As of 17 August, it will be one month since we had requested in writing from the Ministry of Finance to publish the fuel price formula. However, there has not been any positive response thus far. The person who should be held directly accountable for this fiasco is none other than Samaraweera,” added Rajakaruna.
He noted that the CPCCWU had made requests to the Ministry of Finance and Mass Media, the Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development and the CPC imploring them to publish the said formula.
“But the CPC informed us that they were clueless on the price formula. The Secretary of the Ministry of Ministry of Petroleum Resources Development Upali Samarasinghe has informed us requesting us to inquire from the Ministry of Finance and Mass Media. However, the Ministry of Finance is acting as if though they are deaf and blind,” further said Rajakaruna.
Though several societal groups in the recent past have demanded the publication of the fuel price formula, the Government to date has continued to ignore such requests and demands.
Instead of the publication of the formula, a committee which convenes each month on the 9th has twice hiked the prices of fuel.