The workers argue the directive by the Roads and Highways Minister Kwasi Amoako Atta after the 2022 Budget presentation has rendered them redundant and subjected them to economic hardship.
The petition was received by the deputy majority chief whip Habib Iddrisu on behalf of Parliament.
“In the budget statement that was read by the Finance Minister, we noticed that toll collection was supposed to be scrapped, the reason that was given was traffic, pollution and so on,” general secretary of the group, Edward Duncan said.
“We have outlined some points in our petition that if Parliament takes a look at, there will be no need to scrap the toll because the traffic situation will be addressed and the pollution issue should be addressed. So that is why we are presenting this petition.”
“… I can tell you that we are more than 800 toll workers, so all of us as it is now we are all at home not doing anything. So if Parliament could reconsider or even when they deliberate on the budget consider us and our plights and then bring back our jobs, we will be very grateful,” he added.
The government abolished all tolls on public roads and bridges as was announced by Ken Ofori-Atta, the Minister for Finance in the 2022 Budget.
According to the minister, the move should come as relief for road vehicle users given the heavy vehicular traffic, lengthened travel time and ineffective revenue collection at tolling points on our public roads.
Ofori-Atta said the revenue that accrues to the state for the construction and maintenance of roads is inadequate and hence, the government has to look elsewhere to equitably generate revenues for the construction and maintenance of our roads.
“Over the years, the tolling points have led to heavy traffic on our roads and lengthened travel time from one place to another, impacting negatively on time and productivity. The congestion generated at the tolling points, besides creating these inconveniences, also leads to pollution in and around those vicinities.
“To address these challenges, government has abolished all tolls on public roads and bridges. This takes effect immediately the budget is approved. The toll collection personnel will be reassigned. The expected impact on productivity and reduced environmental pollution will more than off-set the revenue forgone by removing the tolls,” he added.
The minister said to compensate for the road tolls, government is looking to introduce innovative ways of raising revenue such as the proposed 1.7% phone transactions levy payable by mobile money users per transaction above GHS 100. He said this will help government to shore up revenue inflows to fund road projects in the country.
This takes effect immediately the budget is approved. The toll collection personnel will be reassigned. The expected impact on productivity and reduced environmental pollution will more than off-set the revenue forgone by removing the tolls.
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