The Association of Ghana Road Contractors has expressed gratitude to the government for its decision to review road tolls in the country.

According to the Chairman of the Association, John Ashford Afful, the policy which is yet to receive Parliament’s approval will increase the resources available for the road sector.

The Ministry of Finance Caretaker, during the 2021 Budget statement on Friday, disclosed government’s decision to revise the current road tolls and align them with present rates in the market.

Mr Osei-Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu said: “Mr Speaker, to maintain the improvements on our roads, Government will review existing road tolls and align them with current market rates. This will form part of the framework for promoting burden-sharing as we seek to transform our road and infrastructure sector in a post-Covid era.”

He added that government seeks to amend the Fees and Charges (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 2018 (Act 983) that governs the setting of Rates and Tolls to accommodate an automatic annual adjustment that will be pegged to the previous year’s average annual inflation.

Mr Afful who spoke on ‘Midday News’ with Emefa Apawu Monday afternoon, further urged the government to revise other related road sector levies to enable government pay road contractors.

“We were very happy to hear about the road tolls being reviewed. We are asking for some increase to enable us increase the amount of money available at the road fund.

“Fuel levy and DVLA will also be reviewed in such a way that there will be enough funds at the Road Funds secretariat to enable them pay the contractors because they work,” he said.

Meanwhile, the government has paid some GH3.7 billion to settle outstanding arrears to contractors.

Despite this action, Mr Afful says he is still concerned as there have been instances in the past where the monies were never released to contractors even though it had been allocated to them.

“Yes, GH3.7 billion has been allocated but the next question is, is it going to be released? There have been instances were funds have been allocated but they are not released for payment to contractors so that is where our worries lie,” he lamented.

Accordingly, he urged the government to work within its allocated budget in the coming years in order to prevent any future tension between the Association and the government.

“Although a lot cannot be said about roads in the first year due to Covid-19, we are just hoping that this year we have vaccination coming in for Covid-19 to be reduced, and also the government will allocate funds for the roads sector as they have promised and I think everything will be fine,” he stated.