Director of Planning and Programs at the National Road Safety Authority (NRSA), David Adonteng has expressed the Authority’s intent to re-introduce the road tow levy.
According to him, this forms part of measures to improve safety on the country’s roads. He further revealed that the Authority has not abandoned the project. Quite the contrary, he explained that discussions are ongoing with relevant stakeholders to reintroduce the levy.
“The problem is still there and it is killing people… we will come up with it again.
“At the moment we are discussing it amongst ourselves technically. We are also discussing with our ministry, police and other stakeholders. We are discussing even at Parliament level to bring back the project”.
Ghana Police Service in the first quarter of 2021, revealed that some 800 died through road accidents. Some section of Ghanaians believe that these accidents could have been avoided if the stationary trucks was towed away.
New modalities for road tow levy
Government in July 2017 decided to suspended the implementation of the mandatory towing levy. The levy sought to impose a mandatory levy on persons with vehicles. However, a statement from the Transport Ministry then indicated that the public were not in favour of it.
The intended purpose of the levy was to tow broken down or disabled vehicles on the roads. The public outcry called for government to review the mandatory towing levy policy. This follows an announcement by the implementing agency, the National Road Safety Commission.
The statement explained that government decided to seek a review of parts of the law to achieve some objectives. This included the “removal from the law, the concept of mandatory towing levy on all owners and persons in charge of motor vehicles and trailers”.
It further noted that towing services will be limited to only licensing and regulating service providers. The statement further expressed government’s commitment in ensuring the removal of broken down vehicles to avert accidents.
“New modalities for dealing with the problem of broken down or disabled vehicles will be formulated and announced in due course”.
Coalition against mandatory road towing levy
Prior to government’s decision, a coalition made up of the National Union of Petroleum Tanker Drivers, Chamber of Petroleum Consumers among others kicked against the levy.
The Coalition believed that “there currently exists very good road safety laws which when enforced will lead to much safer roads for all”. As such, imposing a mandatory levy on all vehicle owners will not resolve the “carnage on our roads”.
Additionally, it noted that, “we already have sufficient laws and sanctions for drivers who leave their vehicles in dangerous positions”.
The group further revealed that it was necessary for government to accept responsibility for failing to “apply the needed resources” in dealing with the actual causes of road accidents. To ameliorate the situtation, the Coalition suggested the implementation of the right measures from government.
“We wish to remind government that it has a duty to design, build and maintain safe roads with appropriate lay byes, rest stops and parking spaces along highways”.