The National Concerned Drivers Association and True Drivers Union have called on its members across the country to resist any form of increment in road tolls by government.
This follows a hint by caretaker Finance Minister Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu about government’s intended review of road tolls.
According to the Drivers Association, its members have been paying road tolls for years without seeing any proper development by government on the roads.
In a statement by the association, the association bemoaned the increase in the price of fuel and announced it will increase transportation fares effective Thursday, 18 March 2021.
“Now fuel consumers are again set to pay more at the pump as some major Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) have further increased their prices”, the statement by the two driver groups noted. The fuel increment is also coupled with increment of prices of spare parts and other lubricants.
“With this situation, we have in consultations with all other driving unions and associations decided to increase the prices of fares come Thursday 18/03/2021.”
It urged “stakeholders” to bear with them and comply with the decision to enable it “serve them better.”
It further noted that: “As drivers, we have been paying the road tolls for years yet, there have been no developments on our roads especially on our highways, not to talk about the rural and urban roads” adding that: “We are therefore calling on all drivers unions and associations to help resist any form of road toll increment.”
The government of Ghana intends reviewing road tolls, caretaker Finance Minister hinted while delivering this year’s budget statement on the floor of Parliament on Friday, 12 March 2021.
“Mr Speaker, to maintain the improvements on our roads, the government will review existing road tolls and align them with current market rates”, he told Parliament on Friday, 12 March 2021 when he delivered the budget and economic statement. “This will form part of the framework for promoting burden-sharing, as we seek to transform our road and infrastructure sector in a post-COVID era”.
Furthermore, he noted, in 2021, “we will amend the Fees and Charges (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2018 (Act 983) that governs the setting of rates and tolls to accommodate an automatic annual adjustment that will be pegged to the previous year’s average annual inflation as published by the Ghana Statistical Service”.
The likely upward adjustment will add to new levies and taxes introduced by the government in the budget.