Mr Kwasi Amoako-Atta, the Minister of Roads and Highways, has assured Ghanaians of the government’s commitment to fixing all roads in the country to boost economic activities.
He has, thus, pleaded with the public to minimize their call for the immediate fixing of all deplorable roads in the country.
Speaking at the inauguration of a 10-member Governing Board of the Ghana Highway Authority (GHA) in Accra on Tuesday, the Minister said Government had made significant strides in the road sector, saying the sector was now more robust than had never been experienced in the past.
However, Mr Amoako-Atta noted that the Ministry was aware that more needed to be done on some bad roads in the country.
He said: “Last year, especially, when the President declared 2020 as the year of roads, a lot has been done in the road sector generally and because of the success of that programme it was not surprising that the President also declared 2021 as another year of roads and I can tell you that a lot of road infrastructure is happening across the length and breadth of this country.”
“The road sector is now very robust, something which has never been experienced in the history of this country. Yes, there are some bad, terrible roads in our country but everybody should also know and appreciate that all roads in our country cannot be fixed in one year, in one month, in one day, but one after the other, region by region, district by district, constituency by constituency, a lot will be covered God willing between now and 2024,” the Minister assured.
The Board, chaired by Mr I. K. Mensah, has Dr Abass Mohammed Awolu from the Ministry of Roads and Highways; Mr Christian Nti, Acting Chief Executive, (GHA); Mr Felix Aboagye, a representative from the Road Users Association of Ghana and Mrs Mangowa Ghanney from the Ministry of Finance.
The rest are; Mrs Adelaide Anno-Kumi, Ministry of the Defence; Mr Isaac Addai, Ghana Association of Consultants; Mrs Cynthia Asare Bediako, Ministry Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation; Mr Ernst Oppong Boateng, Private Road Transport Union and a pending member from the Private Enterprises Federation.
Addressing the board members, Mr Amoako-Atta said the GHA played a very important role in the management of the road sector as it was responsible for the trunk road network of the country and controlled on the average 15,360kilometers of roads, representing 19.2 per cent of the total km of roads in the country.
He urged the board to, therefore, familiarise themselves with the GHA Act 1997 (Act 540), especially with sections 12 and 16 and ensure that they were implemented and fully complied with by road users.
“These are two areas I want to urge you, members of the board to be strong and courageous and to come up with decisions and policies that will ensure the effective control at these two areas because these are areas that I must be honest with you corruption is so ripe and is reported every day,” the Minister added.
Mr Mensah said despite the financial challenges that had bedevilled the Authority over the past years, there had been significant improvement in the country’s trunk road networks in recent years.
He commended the government for the significant investment it made in the sector under the year of roads last year and this year.
“We believe, and I think most of my board members will share in this that the next level of investment is to be made to improve traffic congestion, resulting from recent rapid growth in the economy.
GHA believes that the congestion can only be removed through a combination of physical expansion and traffic management measures along the trunk road network,” he said.