Give MMDAs the chance to construct their roads – Darko-Mensah
The Western Regional Minister, Mr Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, has stated that it was time for the Metropolitan, Municipal, and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to make road construction decisions under the supervision of the Regional Coordinating Councils (RCCs).
He said by doing that, the MMDAs and RCCs would be able to perform timely maintenance and better manage the roads, avoiding rapid deterioration that would necessitate large sums of money to repair.
Mr Darko-Mensah, who made the remarks in an interview, indicated that citizens’ first port of call for bad roads was the MMDAs and RCCs.
As a result, he urged Parliament to consider enacting legislation allowing the various MMDAs and RCCs to build their own roads with a certain level of funding to address the road sector’s challenges.
He praised the concept of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) initiatives for road construction but expressed concern about the over-centralization of road sector funds, which he said was impeding progress in the sector.
He also suggested that a bill should consider how private companies could be allowed to build roads within their catchment areas rather than being forced to give the funds to the Ghana Highways Authority (GHA) and the Urban Roads Department.
He noted that such measures would save the country money because roads built by private companies were often relatively less expensive.
Mr Darko-Mensah, who also served as Vice Chairperson of Parliament’s Roads Committee, cited the Tarkwa-Abosso road, which was built by the Mines at a fraction of the cost that the government would have paid.