Roads Ministry pushes for increase in road tolls

BY: graphic.com.gh

The Ministry of Roads and Highways has sent a proposal to Cabinet for an increment in road tolls to help boost revenue for the road fund.

According to the Sector Minister, Mr Kwasi Amoako Attah, the increment was needed to help improve the cash flow into the road fund so as to be able to pay contractors.

“As at now, I have sent a memo to Cabinet asking for an increase in the tolls all aimed at trying to improve revenue base and to improve the cash flow into the road fund so that the road fund board chairman and his board members will cease to sweat.”

Mr. Amoako Attah was speaking at the Ghana Highway Authority 2019 board and management retreat on Wednesday.

He also said an increment was needed “so that our contractors can be paid so that we can finance the road infrastructure that we want to give to our people and our country.”

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Describing the current state of many toll booths as “so filthy”, the Minister said, “we are not getting the expected revenue out of the toll booth.”

According to him, after a survey, his Ministry has become aware of the fact that “we are losing a minimum of 40 per cent [revenue], maximum 80 per cent revenue from our toll booths.”

Mr. Amoako Attah said he has also ordered that the manager in charge of tollbooths in the country, Mr Emmanuel Spencer Baah should be immediately reassigned, because of his handling of the government policy on recruiting persons with disabilities to collect road tolls.

“Instead of the 50 percent slot to the disabled people, only 100 are disabled. And even for this even this 100, I have had a number of complaints… The manager for toll booths should be removed and reassigned immediately,” said the Minister.

There are 35 tollbooths in the country.

Efforts have been made to automate all toll booths in the country, but only four out of the 35 toll booths had been automated.

The four are the Ngleshie Amanfrom, Accra Plaza, Tema Plaza and the Amasaman booths.

The automation is envisioned to increase the toll booth contribution to the road fund.

As of now, the highest contributor to the road fund is the fuel levy.

The Ghana Highway Authority (GHA) raked in GHc1.8 million in 2018 from the toll booths constructed on highways across the country.

This was a 4.3 per cent increase from the GHc1.79 million figure in 2017.

Credit: Citinewsroom