The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) has indicated that for government to carry out excellent road expansion projects throughout the country as per its manifesto pledge, it must consider the dualization of all major highways.
CILT said government must take keen consideration of this so as to avoid head-on collisions on these major roads and reduce its effects on the economy.
The President of CILT-Ghana, Ebo Hammond, said this when the Institute’s Council presented some policy recommendations to the Deputy Minister for Roads and Highways, Hon. Anthony Abayifaa Karbo at the ministry, yesterday.
Ebo Hammond indicated that key highways including Elubo-Takoradi-Cape Coast-Accra-Aflao and Accra-Kumasi-Tamale-Paga need consideration since they are the key road-spine of the country.
“Their development may be done in phases with funding arrangements such as BOOT and other PPP types,” he said.
According to him, CILT Ghana as a professional body for transport, logistics and supply chain that wholly understand the core business of the ministry and its agencies is presenting some policy recommendations to the ministry in their efforts to support government to achieve its objectives in the road sector.
Whiles commending government for already taking certain bold steps in the road sector, CILT proposed that road projects, both new or re-modeled, in the cities should have dedicated lanes for emergencies and high occupancy buses to help facilitate emergency medical evacuation and to facilitate BRT.
He averred that the Institute holds government in a very high esteem over steps being undertaken to re-construct the 19.5 kilometer Accra-Tema Motorway into a six-carriageway to ease the flow of vehicular traffic.
Ebo Hammond mentioned that the steps will enhance the economic productivity of the nation and improve bridges to assure public safety. He said: “The Institute is happy to hear the assurance by government to ensure value for money in the award and execution of roads contracts.”
Among the Institutes recommendations, is the use of cement to construct roads in Ghana.
Elaborating on this, Ebo Hammond enumerated that CILT supports the proposed policy of using cement to construct roads in Ghana as announced by His Excellency the Vice President.
To them, it will help find new jobs for the masonry and other related cadres beyond the housing sector, apart from saving the nation its hard won foreign exchange and boosting local production of cement.
He also mentioned that though using cement to construct roads in Ghana might be expensive, it will be cost effective because it will last longer than the usual asphalt roads.
“Government should consider purposively increasing the recruitment of physically challenged persons who have the ability to collect road tolls to help in social inclusion for this group. The MoRH may need to sanitize the illegal furniture on the highways and roads as there is a lot of clutter by inappropriately placed signboards/posts which sometimes block the view of motorists from seeing road signs/directions thereby endangering drivers and passengers,” he said.
According to him, there is the need to ensure standards for erection of billboards to prevent them from endangering motorists and pedestrians during storms as has been witnessed during stormy weather conditions.
CILT also proposed a constant monitoring of major roads to ensure that faded road markings are remarked to improve night driving, especially in the absence of streetlights on most highways and roads, whilst a recommending that “the ministry go back to study and take notice of the coherent and thoroughly researched Integrated Transport Plan (ITP) developed for Ghana in 2010 and forecasted through to 2035 for implementation; and also factor the content in the development of the new transport policy.”
There is the need for most congested urban roads to be improved by opening up all access roads, slip roads, by-passes, one-ways connecting major roads to help decongest the cities and reduce urban travel time.
“We recommend that the government always consider professionals to execute such complex road works for which professionals of CILT could offer their expertise in the various aspects of managing the logistical and research aspects, among others of road development,” he said, adding “The current quest for creation of new regions will undoubtedly impact on the country’s road network as new regions will need to be linked to adjoining regions warranting the remodeling of existing road networks of any new region (s) created.”
He however indicated that the Institute appreciates that for the purposes of focus, His Excellency the President has created various ministries with each taking care of aspects of the transportation system and advised that there should be constant coordination of strategies, programmes and plans among the transport-related ministries to help achieve synergy and avoid duplication of efforts.
He commended government and the Roads and Highways Ministry for the steps so far taken to review all road projects and urged the ministry to study the recommendations so that together, they can all fashion out modalities to make the road sector work better.
Receiving the recommendations from the CILT President, the Deputy Minister, Anthony Karbo gave the assurance that his ministry will take all stated recommendations to good use.
He however charged CILT to make further recommendations to government on possible ways of financing road projects in Ghana.
According to him, private sector involvement in the development of our roads is very important and that CILT must partner government to educate and create awareness on finding new financial mechanisms for the road sector.
On the use of cement for constructing roads, the Deputy Minister indicated that government is considering that strategy but decision will be taken after a committee set up to look at the cost benefits come out with its report and recommendations.
Anthony Karbo also mentioned that leakages at the toll booths will be addressed whilst extensive consultations are underway to get persons with disability to man the various toll booths.
Source: PROSPER AGBENYEGA