Pay our arrears - former road toll collectors demand
The National President of the Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations (GFD), Joseph Atsu Homadzi, has appealed to the Ministry of Roads and Highways to honour its promise of paying all arrears owed former road toll collectors who are also persons with disabilities (PWDs).
The GFD President in a statement explained that the Ministry after terminating road tolls collection promised to pay all arrears owed the collectors as well as to find alternative employment for them.
Government in the 2022 budget presented to Parliament by the Minister of Finance, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta, abolished the payment of road tolls across the country, hence relieving off all persons who were engaged by the Ministry of Roads and Highways as toll collectors, many of them being PWDs.
Mr Homadzi said the Roads Minister promised to find alternative employment for all persons with disabilities who were affected by that policy and also to pay them whatever arrears were due them at the time of termination.
He said for almost two years since the assurance was made, it had not been fulfilled, leaving many of the affected PWDs living without jobs and under very difficult life conditions.
He said some of the affected PWDs decided to picket at the ministry in order for their concerns to be addressed.
“They deserve to be treated with respect and dignity by the leaders who have a state responsibility to care for the vulnerable in society, including persons with Disabilities who, unfortunately, are already at the receiving end of multiple discrimination when it comes to implementing”, Homadzi added.
“The actions taken against the toll collectors with disabilities are most unfortunate, reprehensible, and an embarrassment to the country which in 2022 co-hosted the Global Disability Summit with the government of Norway”, he said.
The GFD President has, therefore, urged the ministry to make prompt payment of the arrears owed to former toll collectors in accordance with their terms of employment and reassign all the affected persons with disabilities to new employment avenues as promised.
"We trust the ministry will recognize the urgency of this matter and take the necessary steps to ensure the well-being of those who have been unjustly treated”, Mr Homadzi added.