The Ghana Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC-Ghana) has brought up a policy document stressing its call for the government to adopt automation in the road toll collections.
COPEC-Ghana is of the view that an automated system will reduce traffic, increase revenue and prevent fatalities among road toll attendants when accidents occur.
“There have been a number of reports on road traffic accidents around toll booths in Ghana. A recent one is the one which occurred on Monday 12th July 2021, at the Accra-Tema end of the Motorway which was reported by various media outlets across the country… The reports indicated that one (1) person died while six (6) others suffered various injuries when a tipper truck with registration number GG 3542- 20 sped into one of the tollbooths,” the policy brief stated
The Chamber also said employing electronic tolls collection system would prevent the occasional thievery cases, reduce the pressure at the tollbooth and save commuters from inhaling carbon emissions.
Mr Duncan Amoah, Executive Secretary, Chamber of Petroleum Consumers Ghana, has said with automation, vehicle owners could be billed upfront and given an electronic sticker that had toll access.
“With the electronic system, we are proposing that an estimated amount is given to vehicle owners as part of their roadworthiness. That is a better way than a drive stopping at the booth removing money and waiting for change, which wastes so much time,” he noted.
“By doing this the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority will account the proceeds to the government instead of the current system where the government will not have to wait for sales from the toll operators. No one can steal from the toll funds again and the government will get the money it needs,” he said.
Mr Amoah said the proposal, which had been sent to the Transport and Finance Ministries respectively, was urging the government to change all the toll booths from manual to electronic and leave one manual booth as an option for those who refused to pay upfront.
“When the traffic builds up at that single manual booth lane, it will be their choice. It will not be convenient and they will finally adapt to the change,” he said.
Mr Amoah stated that with the proposed electronic system, which was seamless, it would be easy for the government to implement toll increment and give the Finance Ministry the room to plan what to do with the revenue.