A number of transport operators in the country have hinted at plans to reject an increase in road tolls after insisting that Parliamentarians would have let the people down if indeed it is approved.
Appearing before the Appointments Committee in Parliament on Tuesday, February 16, 2021, Minister for Roads and Highway Kwasi Amoako-Attah emphasized that increasing the existing road tolls for vehicles in the country is the surest way to meet the demand for rehabilitation, maintenance, and possible new constructions to improve infrastructure in Ghana’s road sector.
“If I am given the approval, it’s one of the things I am going to do immediately. There is going to be a proposal to increase the toll rate, and I am going to bring to this house for support,” he said.
With talk of the road toll increment reportedly imminent, transport operators have warned the government that they will reject it.
In a statement from the operators belonging to Concern Drivers Association, Ghana Committed Drivers Association, Truth Drivers Union, it says the government should look for other avenues to raise the needed funds.
“The Road Fund for all intent and purposes was set up to receive money generated from the road tolls for the routine maintenance of our roads. But government instead of using the money rather mortgaged the Road Fund and raised money for other things in the road sector instead of maintaining the roads.
“Information we have picked up is that Parliament has already approved the new road tolls. If that is the case then our Parliamentarians have not dealt with us well at all.
This is because they represent our interest and are therefore expected to approve bills and taxes that are to inure to our benefit by making our conditions of life better and not the situation that brings hardships to us,” the statement said.
It adds, “On the other hand, if Parliament is yet to approve the new road tolls, we wish to entreat our honourable members of Parliament to reject the new road tolls outright.
The sector Minister, Hon. Kwasi Amoako Atta, has consistently made it clear that there are leakages in the collection of the road tolls. If indeed it is so then our considered view is that increasing the road tolls is not a prudent measure to seal the leakages.
Rather, the Minister must device scientific or digital ways of blocking the leakages in order to maximize the money generated from the tolls.”