Some commercial road transport operators have rejected the government’s decision to increase road tolls.
According to the drivers, years of the collection of road tolls in the country have not been reflected in the routine maintenance of roads.
Today, a statement said, there are more potholes on the roads more than ever before and they have become death traps.
“So the question is what has government been using the road tolls for?” The statement asked.
It added “The Road Fund for all intent and purposes was set up to receive money generated from the road tolls for the routine maintenance of our roads. But government instead of using the money rather mortgaged the Road Fund and raised money for other things in the road sector instead of maintaining the roads.
“Information we have picked up is that Parliament has already approved the new road tolls. If that is the case then our Parliamentarians have not dealt with us well at all. This is because they represent our interest and are therefore expected to approve bills and taxes that are to inure to our benefit by making our conditions of life better and not the situation that brings hardships to us.
“On the other hand, if Parliament is yet to approve the new road tolls, we wish to entreat our honourable members of Parliament to reject the new road tolls outright.
“The sector Minister, Hon. Kwasi Amoako Atta, has consistently made it clear that there are leakages in the collection of the road tolls. If indeed it is so then our considered view is that increasing the road tolls is not a prudent measure to seal the leakages.
“Rather, the Minister must device scientific or digital ways of blocking the leakages in order to maximize the money generated from the tolls.
“We have also picked up intelligence that there are plans to add the tolls to the prices of fuel at the pumps in order to do away with the toll booths. This also we vehemently reject it.
“The commercial road transport operation is already reeling under serious high fuel price increases couple with daily increases in spare parts. As a result, any additional tax or increase in road toll will collapse our business.
“We, have, therefore, resolved that if the road toll is increased we will advise ourselves accordingly. Ordinarily, the increase in the road toll would not be much of a bother to us since we can equally adjust our lorry fares to reflect the percentage increase but we also feel the impact of any upward adjustment in our fares on the already burdened commuters.
“The public may recall that in our last press release on May 16, 2021, we stated categorically that anytime there will be upward adjustment in fuel prices or any other tax that affects our business we will accordingly adjust our fares. However, we have realized that the impact is often too much for the ordinary commuter.
“This time round as we have stated above, we will carry out a series of activities to resist the increase in the road tolls.”