Chairman of Road Safety Advocates Ghana, has accused the Transport Ministry and Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) of lack of commitment to addressing road crashes in the country.
According to Nana Annor Amihere II, the two bodies are disinterested in deploying technology to alert sleepy drivers to avert road accidents.
His claim follows confirmation by the police that the driver of one of the buses in the Kintampo accident which killed more than 60 people, was speeding while sleeping behind the wheel.
The Road Safety advocate claims the Transport Ministry dismissed a proposal for the use of a cap which monitors the brain to alert sleepy drivers and prevent accidents.
Transport Minister with a victim of the Kintampo accident
“I got a solution for driver fatigue and it is used by the gold mines...it is just a cap that you put on with a sensor that monitors the brain. The moment a person with it experiences sleep, it will beep to give the user an alert.
“I took a sample to the Transport Ministry, National Road Safety Commission (NSRC) and GPRTU were all not interested. If you don’t put good road interventions in place, gory accidents will expose you,” he said.
One of the recommendations of an inter-ministerial committee to be implemented to help the country fight the carnage on the road is to turn the NSRC into an Authority.
The Commission wants a change of its law to deal with indiscipline following a devastating carnage on an important highway that left dozens dead on Friday.
Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah with NRSC boss May Obiri-Yeboah
Chief Executive of the Commission, May Obiri-Yeboah, explained that all of its current powers remain persuasive as it was set up to carry out road safety education and advocacy.
“If we don’t have the teeth to bite then we will continue with the education,” she told the Joy FM's Super Morning Show on Monday.
But the Road Safety advocate disagrees.
“Making National Road Safety Commission into an authority is a step in the right direction but we must embrace it with cautious optimism. This is because creating an authority without giving them the tools to work, then you are creating a concert party,” he told Joy News’ Araba Koomson.
A dysfunctional traffic light at Mallam Junction in Accra
Government is dedicating ¢1 billion to fix traffic lights, erect road signs and paint defaced road markings to improve road safety.
An amount of ¢6.5 million has been allocated to the National Road Safety Commission for public education and training.
On the recommendation of deployment of speed limit camera, Nana Annor Amihere II said the local environment and human attitude will make it difficult to use.
“Three years ago, speed cameras would have been the best but with load shedding and the culture of lack of maintenance will make them useless within six months. It simply won’t work,” he said.