President Akufo-Addo has said unproductive, unhealthy and expensive traffic jams are taking the shine out of the capital city, Accra.
Delivering his second State of the Nation Address Thursday in Parliament, Nana Akufo-Addo stressed on the need to improve the country’s transportation system.
“We have to improve upon the transportation system so that no part of this country feels cut off, or can be deemed to be too far from the centre,” he said.
The President said he is convinced that the creation of new regions alone would not open up our country.
“That would not, on its own, convince our young people that they do not have to come to Accra to make a living,” he added.
According to him, although there are certain inconveniences in life that people adjust to, traffic jams are not one of them.
“I fear that one of these days one more car will join the madness on the roads in Accra, and our city will be completely gridlocked,” he observed.
Last year many Ghanaians were shocked to learn how the country loses billions of cedis worth of productive hours, as a result of bad roads and congestion in urban areas.
Seething anger at standstills is a common emotion felt by all drivers. The causes of traffic jams are well understood for poor infrastructure and ongoing construction works.
In May 2017, Dr Jonathan Annan, a senior lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Business School said his research showed traffic constitutes about 10.5% of the country's Gross Domestic Product while congestion on our roads constitutes 8.21% of GDP.
This cost comes from travel delays, the increased impact on the environment, increased vehicle costs from travel delays, and increased chance of vehicle collisions.
Giving some assurance, President Akufo-Addo said improving the country’s transportation system “is one of the most effective ways to stop the unsustainable rush to Accra.”
“We have to build the roads to open up and link up the various parts of the country. Journey times between parts of the country have to be reduced,” he said.