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Common Purpose Alliance, Ghana ( CPAG) expresses our concern for the recent recommendations of the Parliamentary committee on roads and transport to implement the so called “towing tax”.
CPAG is of the opinion that this decision has not been well thought through and lacks the broader consultation from stake holders most likely to be affected by such a “tax.” We are by this press release calling on government to state its position after taking into consideration all the concerns raised by Ghanaians.
First of all, that the proposed law would give exclusive rights to one company to provide the towing services smacks of cronyism and could well be inimical to the interests of long established breakdown services in the country. It is particularly worrying that the “favoured” service provider has no such track record in Ghana.
Once again the creation of a monopoly with such wide ranging powers will just add another avenue for corruption at a time when the government is working hard to eliminate such.
CPAG contends that government needs to rather enforce our existing laws on road safety management.
We propose that this policy be run through another diagnostic evaluation to scrap out irrelevant components that brings the whole idea to light as an attempt to use a legislation to facilitate and legalize “roadside robbery”. The attempt to levy motor bikes in our view is rather unfortunate and we maintain that this could be motivated by ill-intent that needs a critical evaluation. It had rather tainted the whole idea in a very bad light. It should not be contemplated and countenanced at all to add motor bikes which could be pushed away by its users with a little effort in case of any breakdown.
It is obvious that monopoly has the negative tendency of setting in complacency and it is even a further grounds of breeding corruption and that is what as a Nation we should try as much as we can to avoid. Our focus should rather be geared towards a robust and healthy competition which will help achieve our desired results effectively.
CPAG proposes that it will not be reasonably justifiable to rush headlong into passing this mandatory road tax without implementing the existing laws on road safety. We contend that government needs to rather enforce our existing laws on road safety management. It is sad to know that the service provider has not yet performed satisfactorily on even keeping our roads clean yet, we are ready to entrust more responsibilities with further resources into their hands. Government should avoid any further abuse of state resources and focus on strengthening existing laws.
We are by this press release demanding that government should rescind on its intention to make it compulsory but allow individuals to take part on their own volition without any legislation seeking to coerce individuals to subscribe to this whole policy. It should not be forgotten that some road users might have their private mechanics or might have subscribed to other insurance policies which has a package for this responsibility which government seeks to whisk away with a legislation. In fact it is very unhealthy to the path of deepening our Democratic credentials which allows each and every individual to engage in any fair business without any unjustifiable interference from government.
We therefore call on appropriate authorities to review the modalities for the implementation of the mandatory road tow levy to enhance its efficiency. It will be sad if this policy does not get the support from the masses due to its abusive nature. it will create more problems than we ever anticipated.
Abraham Awuriki Yeboah
Executive secretary, CPAG directorate.
By : Abraham Awuriki Yeboah