The National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) has described as woefully inadequate the GH¢6.5 million the government allocated it for road safety sensitisation as part of an action plan to curb road crashes.
Public Relations Officer of the Authority Kwame Kodua said the money as was announced to the general public may appear to be huge but he says it does not meet the entire operational plan of NRSA.
Mr Kodua said the money has been received in full and used for its intended purpose, some of which he said includes an ongoing training of some 13,000 selected high-risk drivers who had become rusty overtime.
“The money has been received and it’s been expended for the purpose for which it was given, part of it is the over 13,000 drivers that we have identified across the country on roads that we consider to be very challenging,” he indicated.
“We try to refresh them through some training together with the police and DVLA,” he added.
This comes on the back of an action plan approved in March 2018 by the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to tackle road carnage in the country after an inter-ministerial report identified ‘indiscipline’ as the leading cause of road accidents.
As part of the action plan, the National Road Safety Commission, as it was known then, was transformed into an ‘Authority’ with an additional funding of GH¢6.5 million for public sensitization and education.
The plan also provided for the deployment of cameras on the roads by the Motor Transport and Traffic Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service to be able to monitor and detect traffic offences.
The government also promised a yearly allocation of GH¢335 million for 3 years, beginning 2018, for the completion of road markings and signage.
Mr. Kodua, though fully aware of the action plan and all its components, is unable to speak to the camera deployment and road markings and signages as that does not fall within the remit of the National Road Safety Authority, he stated.
He noted that the authority has had to collaborate with institutions like the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA), the Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) and other institutions to pull off its sensitization drive because it does not have the staff strength.
“Originally, if you look at the human capacity strength at the authority, if you put our service persons involved and all of us together, until recently we were not even up to 100,” he said.
While NRSA will do its best in executing its mandate of educating the public on road safety, he said, it behoves on the public to see road safety as a collective responsibility.