“If you want good roads prepare to pay expensive road tolls” – Amoako-Attah

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According to Minister of Roads and Highways Kwasi Amoako-Attah, Ghanaians have the lowest tolls in the world yet still need quality roads.

In a recent interview with the media, the Atiwa West MP compared the situation overseas to that in Ghana and stated that the nice roads in foreign countries are due to the residents paying “expensive tolls.”

In the hope that its replacement with the contentious e-levy would raise more money for road construction, the payment of road tolls was suspended in November 2021 after the 2022 budget was read in the waning hours of that same year. According to Mr. Amoako-Attah, “In a whole year, we were getting an average of GHS780 million.”

“If you deduct salaries and whatever from it, how much is left?” Amoako-Attah questioned.

The MP responded to his own inquiry by stating: “Depending on the state of the ground, that amount of money cannot even create 10 kilometers of road.”

He said that during that period, modest automobiles paid GHp50 while SUVs paid GHS1 in road tolls.

He believed that if “all of us” had contributed into the e-levy, it would have generated plenty of funds to pay for our own replacement of the original tollbooths.

By stating that “certain highways, when built to the right specifications, will come with tolling facilities, but those tolling facilities will be electronic tolling facilities; it won’t come like the form we used to have in the past where people were in a very long queue,” Mr. Amoako-Attah hinted at a return of the payment of road tolls.

The electronic system, according to him, is meant to reduce the gridlock created at toll booths.

“If drivers have to be in a queue for two, three, four hours and you get there and you pay GHp50”.

He said: “Ghana was paying the lowest toll in the whole world”.

“I challenge anybody who can tell me any country which was paying tolls lower than Ghana”, he dared.

The minister stressed: “We were paying the lowest toll in the whole world, meanwhile, we want excellent, good roads in our country and rightly so; every Ghanaian, including you and me, yes, we want good things; we must be prepared to pay for [them]”.

In this respect, he stated: “Tolls, if they are to come back gradually, will arrive in a new shape, one way or the other.”

He said, “No, we won’t be paying GHp50 and the GHS1 anymore.

Mr. Amoako-Attah said, “If you travel abroad, tolls are quite costly,in support of his claim that paying for roads is more expensive.

He claimed that the high cost of tolls elsewhere is the reason they are able to construct such nice roads.

The law is still in place, he added, adding that tolls have not been annulled or eliminated despite the stoppage of payment for the last year.

The toll payment was reinstated, according to the 2023 budget.

Source: Ghanatodayonline.com

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