Deputy Ranking Member on the Parliamentary Select Committee on Legal Affairs Francis-Xavier Sosu has described the hasty approach to the implementation of the decision to abolish road tolls in the country as a populist approach.
Sosu, who is also the Member of Parliament for Madina Constituency in the Greater Accra Region said the approach is an affront to Parliament as an institution.
In line with the government’s decision to abolish road and bridge tolls across the country, the Minister of Roads and Highways, Kwasi Amoako Atta directed that collection of the tolls must stop by 12 AM Thursday, November 18.
A statement he issued on Wednesday, November 17 after the budget presentation by the Finance Minister said “Following the presentation of the 2022 budget by the Finance Minister on behalf of the President of the Republic of Ghana on Wednesday, November 17, 2021, the Ministry of Road and Highways hereby directs the cessation of collection of road and bridge tolls at all locations nationwide. This directive takes immediate effect from 12am on Thursday, November 18 2021”.
Reacting to the issue on 3FM’s Sunrise hosted by Alfred Ocansey on Thursday, Lawyer Sosu said “it is quite unfortunate the approach by the minister and the government”.
“The approach is a very populist approach to divert the attention of the momo tax. Everybody can appreciate the kind of hardship that proposal is going to bring to Ghanaians and we will do all to oppose it [Momo Tax].
He explained that “every budget statement is a proposal by the government. It is subject to debate and approval. They are all matters that must be subjected to discussions”.
“One would have thought that if they are interested in the immediate implementation, they would have brought a motion or certificate of urgency so that we can abort it immediately. But this that we have not discussed or debated and approved, honestly, it’s completely reckless and I don’t know how they are going to answer to that”.
The Madina MP said “the discretionary powers vested in people is supposed to be used to have due regard to others. It’s illegal. It has no legal basis. It’s an assault on Parliament. They have already gone before Parliament. That approach is an affront to Parliament”.