The Ranking Member on Parliament’s Roads and Transport Committee, Governs Kwame Agbodza says the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has always refused to legalize the commercial use of motorcycles in the country.
According to him, the government continues to insist that the okada business is not safe after several attempts to get it legalized.
Agodza made the comment following claims by the Transport Minister, Kwasi Ofori Asiamah that the NPP government has already begun stakeholder consultations to decide whether or to review the law banning okada.
“We have already started consultations with people since 2019. But coming up with such a policy is not about speed but accuracy and getting the right people,” he said.
But the Member of Parliament for Adaklu in an interview with Citi News said claims by the Transport Minister cannot be true.
“The National Road Safety Commission as early as last week is still saying that this okada thing is dangerous so if the Minister is saying that they are doing consultation and those involved are saying that the thing is dangerous, it tells you that, the government is not ready to legalize okada. I was told that we were even going to be recalled by Parliament to deal with it and now we are told it is not going to happen,” Agbodza noted.
John Dramani Mahama, the flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress has promised to legalise okada operations should he be elected President on December 7, 2020.
He insisted that such a law is long overdue since such businesses have created more jobs than all the “artificial” job creation avenues established by any government.
“There are many young people who have finished school but can’t find any job, so they look for what they can do. There are many young people you see riding motorcycles and transporting people from place to place.”
“But according to our laws, okada is illegal. But in reality, okada has become part of us. It has come to stay and you can’t stop it. So I have suggested that when we come into office, we will legalize okada but we will regulate it. We will regulate it and give them the necessary training, so they are able to conduct their business in a safe manner. They must obey all the traffic regulations in order to be able to go about their profession,” he said.
This promise has also been captured in the NDC’s 2020 manifesto.