No government has done more roads in its first term than the Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo led New Patriotic Party government, Chairman of the Roads and Transport Committee of Parliament, Kennedy OseiNyarko, has declared.
According to Mr Nyarko who is also the MP for AkimSwedru, since assuming power in 2017, the government had awarded a combined 7,000 kilometres of roads on contract; out of which 3,800 kilometres had been completed.
The cost of all this is GHC6.4 billion, an unprecedented investment, he observed when he participated in the ongoing budget debate on the floor of Parliament in Accra yesterday.
The opposition National Democratic Congress, he said only managed to add 4,000 kilometres of road from the 79,000 kilometres it inherited from President John Agyekum Kufuor in 2009.
“Yet, you have painted the picture that John Mahama has done majority of roads in the country,” he teased the Minority caucus.
“When we talk of road records, the NDC should be the last political party to talk,” he added.
Of the 80,000 kilometres road in the country, Kennedy OseiNyarko said 45 per cent was in bad shape and urgent steps were needed to raise money to fix them.
Per his estimation, Ghana would need US$16 billion to fix the country’s roads, an amount he said must be raised by citizens, hence the need to support the new tax measures outlined in the budget.
“We must be sincere on how to raise money to fix our roads,” because to him, the alternative would be to go and borrow; an alternative he thinks Ghanaians don’t support.
The government, he said had done much to improve the road network in the country, but could only do much depending on availability of funds.
This, he said was evident by the increment of funds towards roads infrastructure by 108 per cent for 2022 from the 2021 budget.
The actual he said amounts to GHC3.9 billion representing 22 per cent of total capital expenditure in the budget.
“This is a demonstration that Akufo-Addo is fixing Ghana’s roads. The government has every district, every town at heart.”
He said the concerns of MPs were mostly roads and “that is why he has come to you to support the budget to raise funds to fix the roads. Sixteen billion to fix our roads, we don’t have it and that is why we have to support the budget.”
BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI