The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT-Ghana) has called on government to take steps to address the challenges with road accidents in order to reduce fatalities which is untenably high in the country.
It said, for the country to record over 2000 deaths due to road accidents is nothing to glorify about and an indictment on all.
“To this, we call for a Road Transport Regulatory Authority or empower one of the appropriate agencies to take up this responsibility. CILT Ghana does not support the use of motorcycles for commercial purposes (Okada). Parliament must not amend regulation 128 of 2012 L.I 2180 to allow the use of motorcycles for commercial purposes,” he said adding that, Government must invest in rural transport, which is safe but affordable for the rural folks.
The proposal was made when the Governing Council of CILT Ghana paid a courtesy call on the Transport Minister today.
They presented policy advice to the Minister for Transport on steps to accelerate the development of the transport sector in Road, Aviation and Maritime.
CILT Ghana also suggested an effective urban transport planning system in major cities of Ghana to ease the unbearable urban vehicular congestion and government to fast track the establishment of a Road Transport Regulatory Body that will help bring sanity to the public transport system.
The policy brief was presented to the Minister, Hon. Kweku Ofori Asiamah by the CILT-Ghana Governing Council led by its President Ebo Hammond.
Presenting CILT-Ghana’s brief to the Minister, Ebo Hammond indicated that there is the need for government to speed up the establishment of a National Carrier which will help in tourism and investment.
According to him, the establishment of a National Carrier will promote international trade.
“National carrier is still viable because we think it will promote trade, tourism and improve revenue generation into the country,” he said.
He also averred that “Government to ensure the completion of Sunyani airport to help facilitate air travel to the mid-west of the country. Tamale airport would need an upgrade of its facilities (especially land-side) to help convert it to an international airport to serve the northern region and neighboring Sahelian countries. It can also serve as an Aircraft Maintenance Center for the country and West Africa.”
He also called for the completion of the new terminal in Kumasi and its upgrading into an international airport for the mid-regions of the country.
On Maritime, CILT-Ghana proposed a policy that would be designed to attract cargo traffic to the Takoradi Port and make it competitive in the sub-region.
The Minister for Transport on his part, commended the Governing Council of CILT Ghana and indicated that his ministry has over the years established a working relationship with CILT-Ghana; a relationship he hopes to maintain during his second term in office.
According to him, road transport system in the country is bedeviled with institutional challenges but more will be done to enforce road safety regulations.
He averred that there is the need for support for the police service to enforce compliance and that over 80% of road crashes are human errors and the police has a lot to do in ensuring reduction in fatalities.
Hon. Kweku Ofori Asiamah also stressed that, government is strict on the issue of Okada and had made its position known.
According to him, government will not commercialize Okada.
He charged professional bodies like CILT to intensify education for Ghanaians to appreciate the issues better.
On Urban Transport: the Minister said government is doing its best, and putting infrastructure such as bus terminals in place before rolling out the urban transport system.
On Aviation: he also indicted that the Kumasi airport project will end hopefully by first quarter of 2022 whilst work is progressing on the Tamale airport project.
The Minister also indicated that a lot has gone into negotiations for the establishment of a National carrier.
He called collaboration in order to build a solid transport system for the nation.
By PROSPER AGBENYEGA