Prof Ernest Aryeetey
THE PARLIAMENTARY Select Committee on Roads and Transport has okayed the collection of tolls by authorities of the University of Ghana on the university’s roads because the University of Ghana Act, 2010 (Act 806) gives them the power to do so.
The committee however asked the authorities to review the charges downwards which they agreed to do.
Private motorists would pay a toll charge of GH¢1 instead of GH¢3, while commercial drivers plying the university would pay GH¢5
for a day, irrespective of the number of times the driver uses the road.
Students who own cars would be exempted after paying user fees for the year.
The Vice Chairman of the committee, Theophilus Tetteh Chaie, who made this known to DAILY GUIDE after a marathon meeting with officials of the University of Ghana on Thursday, said the university justified why it was collecting the toll via the University of Ghana Act which prohibits ‘outsiders’ from using university facilities including roads without authority from the university.
According to him, the university authorities claimed that they took a loan of GH¢1.3 million from the bank to construct the roads in the university community and that it is only by charging fees from users that they could pay back the loan.
He said the authorities gave the government the option of absorbing the whole cost of construction or allowing them to charge the fees.
Hon Tetteh Chaie noted that the road toll policy had brought sanity into the use of the university roads, which hitherto witnessed vehicular traffic jams, creating inconveniences for staff and students of the university.
Meanwhile, the Minister for Roads and Highways, Amin Amidu Sulemani yesterday gave the assurance in Parliament that the Prestea- Nyamedikan portion of the Prestea-Samreboi road in the Western Region would soon be constructed.
He said the road had been awarded on contract and the construction was in phases.
He gave the assurance when the Member of Parliament for Amenfi West, John
Gyetua asked him about when that portion of the road, which was in a deplorable state, would be constructed.
Authorities of the University of Ghana were said to have made it clear they would only reverse their decision to charge tolls on the roads if government paid them an amount of $2.3million dollars.
According to the school, they took a loan from the bank to reconstruct the roads and needed to repay the loan.
According to a Joy FM report, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Ernest Aryeetey, had told the Roads and Transport Committee that the Act establishing the school gives it the authority to charge the tolls.
BY Thomas Fosu Jnr
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