Adaklu Lawmaker, Kwame Agbodza, has raised issues against the decision by the Minister of Roads and Highways, Kwasi Amoako-Atta to borrow an amount of 558,000 Euors (4million Cedis) to construct new toll booths at a time he is concerting the existing ones into washrooms.
Mr Amoako-Atta had disclosed that tollbooths across the country would used to serve another public purpose since the collection of road tolls has been abolished by the government.
Government in its 2022 Budget removed scrapped the collection of tolls across the country. A directive from the sector minister caused the immediate cessation of tolls even before the budget was approved by Parliament, an act many, including the minority in Parliament described as unlawful.
The tollbooths, since the abolishing of the tolls, have been abandoned. This raised concerns in many quarters, with the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) urging the government to demolish the structures for the sake of road safety. But it does appear the government has different plans for the abandoned structures.
Mr. Amoako-Attah revealed the tollbooth will be used for public urinals.
“We even want to refurbish all tollbooth structures to provide proper and decent washrooms for the use by motorists so that we advised them to desist from that practice where sometimes you see cars stopping on the highway and people getting down to wee-wee as we usually see”, he said.
However, checks by 3news.com show that the tollbooth are still the same was as they were left in November last year.
Speaking on the floor of the House on Tuesday February 8, Mr Agbodza said “This minister is about to borrow an amount of 558,000 Euros, closed to four million cedis to build a new toll booths. You are converting existing toll booths into toilets yet you are borrowing four million Ghana cedis to build new toll booths. Mr Speaker we shouldn’t allow ministers to think that when they come here we give them approval they can go and do whatever they like.”
But reacting to him also on the floor of the House, the Road Minister said “Agbodza is quoting from daily reportage, it was an interview and just a small portion that has been cut out. You haven’t had the opportunity to listen to the whole tape.
“I was speaking to the press and they wanted to know the future of all the toll booths and among others, I said the Ministry has plans and government has plans and among them, I said that even the current toll booths , we have about 38 of them at various vantage points in the country, as part of it the sanitary situation at all these places we are even going to improve.”
“It wasn’t a report, it was a media interview and that portion was picked, you do not have access and you are not privy. As a member of Parliament why do you pick that, you are too ignorant,” he added.
By Laud Nartey|3news.com|Ghana