Acting District Chief Executive (DCE) for Garu in the Upper East Region, Emmanuel Avoka, has revealed that high targets for commercial drivers is responsible for the frequent road accidents involving Garu buses.
According to him, it has emerged that many commercial vehicle owners set targets as high as GHS10,000 for their drivers to meet as sales per week.
In trying to achieve such targets, Mr. Avoka observed the drivers are compelled to overwork; leading to fatigue driving and consequently causing accidents on the roads.
“One of the reasons for which a driver would like to make a u-turn to Kumasi or Garu would be that the vehicle owner has given the driver an amount of GHS10,000 to produce within a week. And then whatever is surplus from the travels within that week becomes the salary of the driver.
So the driver has to go through a lot of fatigue and sleepless nights to ensure he makes about 4 to 5 trips within the 7 days of the week. And you’re aware that these are buses with just a single driver. You can be sure that driver fatigue is going to be prime; and when driver fatigue sets in, then sleep takes over.” Mr. Avoka said in an interview with A1 Radio in line with measures being taken by the Garu District Security Council to curb road carnages involving Garu buses.
He further revealed that “Because of the stress that is put on the drivers by the vehicle owners, they resort to drinking substances that will keep them awake throughout the week to be able to at least raise about GHS12,000 so they can pay GHS10,000 to their vehicle owners.”
To address the situation, Mr. Avoka said the District Security Council has “Scheduled a meeting with all the owners of commercial vehicles operating in Garu, for an important meeting. And we have cautioned that any vehicle owner that fails to attend this very important meeting will not be given the opportunity to have his or her vehicle be part of business in the Garu area.”