Government to ban non-unionized commercial drivers

Kwaku Ofori Asiamah

Mr Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, Minister of Transport, says from January 2021, commercial drivers who do not belong to a recognised transport union will be banned.

The Minister urged all ‘roaming drivers’ to join either the existing associations or form a new union and be registered to operate under the new Urban Transport Project.

He said the move, was to monitor and sanction any recalcitrant driver who flouted the road safety regulations.

Mr Asiamah said this on Thursday at the inauguration of the Takoradi Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) and the introduction of quality bus services in the Secondi-Takoradi Metropolis.

The presentation of the buses is to address the transportation challenges facing the cities in a more comprehensive and holistic manner.

The buses will run services from Takoradi to Apowa, Takoradi to Shama, Takoradi to Sekondi and Takoradi to Kwesimintsim as a pilot project.

Regulation 121 subsections (1) and (2) of Legislative Instrument 2180 (2012), say: “A person shall not operate a commercial vehicle unless that person holds a road transport operator’s licence” and “A person shall not operate as a commercial vehicle driver unless that person is employed by or belongs to a recognised commercial road transport organisation.”

The Minister said the automobile industry is changing rapidly and that the country must be in tandem with the new and emerging trends as well as international best practices in the construction and use of vehicles.

He encouraged the DVLA, and the National Road Safety Authority and industry players to take up the task and bring proposals for consideration as well as implement fully the provisions in the Road Traffic Regulations.

He said government was committed to improving the road network across the country, improve and modernize urban transport service delivery to ensure an efficient use of the available road space.

“Government has increased the capacity of the National Ambulance Services with additional 307 Ambulances and establishment of response centres to enhance emergency response to road traffic crash victims,” he said.

The United Nations has set a new global target for road safety in line with the theme,” “Achieving Global Goals 2030” to reduce road traffic deaths and injuries by 50 per cent by 2030.

Under this global goal, the Minister said, Ghana was seeking to reduce road deaths and injuries from the current average of 2,000 fatalities and about 10,000 injuries per year by 50 per cent.

“Achieving these targets is possible if we put in place the necessary strategies and structures, including adequate investment in public education, road engineering and emergency response to victims of road traffic crashes”.

Mr Akwasi Agyeman Busia, Chief Executive Officer, DVLA, said the commissioning of the edifice was a demonstration of the Authority’s commitment to deliver excellent services to its clients in a more conducive environment.

The DVLA as part of its transformation agenda has modernised a number of its existing offices to improve service delivery.

He said the Authority had received six branded buses under the Public Sector Reform for Results Project being implemented by the Office of the Senior Minister with support from the World Bank to boost its operations.

Source: GNA

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