One of the major policies that has been implemented by all the successive governments under the Fourth Republic is the opening up of roads linking Accra to other parts of the country. All the major entry points to the national capital, Accra, Cape Coast, Tema, Aburi, Nsawam roads have been dualised.
The development has helped to ease traffic congestion substantially in Accra, thus helping to boost productivity. Unfortunately, despite the dualisation of these roads, traffic flow on some of them is still problematic. A typical example is the Tetteh Quarshie-Madina-Adenta road. The construction of this six-lane carriageway with ancillary roads was executed, apparently because of the Peduase Lodge.
There used to be heavy traffic on the corridor before its construction into the six lane super highway. When the project, initiated by the Kufuor government, was finally completed by the Atta Mills administration, thousands of Accra residents moved to stay in that part of Accra. It is an undeniable fact that most of Accra workers now stay in places such as Aburi, Mamfe, Ashesi and all the way to Dodowa, the traditional capital of Greater Accra.
The development has put a lot of pressure on the road, especially from PRESEC Junction at Legon, through Madina to the former Adenta Barrier. But for the foresight of the Ghana Highway Authority, which has constructed a number of link roads to ease traffic on the main road, the traffic situation on the road corridor would have been uncontrollable. But, as commuters try to make do with the current situation, trotro drivers have also jumped into the fray.
There used to be free flow of traffic from Madina Firestone through Madina Zongo Junction to the Redco Flats intersection. But, ever since trotro drivers decided to turn the traffic lights at Zongo Junction into a temporary station, where they drop and pick up passengers, traffic on that particular stretch is getting out of control. Meanwhile, this is a road that links the Peduase Lodge, where most of Ghana’s foreign dignitaries are hosted.
Sometimes one can spend over an hour on that road, because of the conduct of the trotro drivers. Unfortunately, the police, apart from an occasional raid, look on helplessly when these drivers are flouting traffic rules and inconveniencing thousands of people using the road. If the time wasted on that particular intersection is quantified in productivity terms, the police would have realised that the country is losing heavily.
The La Nkwantanan Municipal Assembly has provided a lorry park for both trotro and long distance vehicles to use, but these drivers have abandoned it, and instead are using the middle of such an important road to pick passengers.
This is complete lawlessness, but because the police are not responding, as one would have expected, these drivers do not care a hoot about the inconvenience they are causing to the other road users.
The Chronicle is, therefore, calling on the head of the Motor Traffic and Transport Unit Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service to act quickly to save the nation from losing her productive hours unnecessarily.
If the drivers are arrested and prosecuted for obstructing the free flow of traffic, it will serve as a deterrent to others. Leaving them to do their own things, as if Ghana is a banana republic, will defeat the purpose for which the road was constructed.
We hope the MTTD boss is listening and reading us.