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Okada legalisation: Transport Ministry was misunderstood – Pius Hadzide

Pius Hadzide, the Deputy Minister of Information has said that Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia’s pronouncement on the Okada business is not a departure from a statement from the Ministry of Transport which hinted that the government was considering legalizing the operations of Okada in the country.In what appeared to be a reaction to the NDC’s promise to legalise Okada, the Transport Ministry said in a statement that consultations have already been done with the aim of mitigating the challenges in the Okada business.

The ministry espoused in the statement that the government upon assumption of office engaged stakeholders on the law that makes operationS of Okada illegal in the country.

“The Ministry of Transport has taken notice of public debate on the legality of the Okada business. The Ministry, therefore, wishes to inform the general public on the following: 1. The law which makes Okada operations illegal, the Road Traffic Regulation 2012, L.I.2180, was passed in 2012 by the then NDC administration under former President, His Excellency John Dramani Mahama”.

“2. The Akufo-Addo Government, upon assumption of office, sought to assess the implementation of the Road Traffic Regulations, and, in the process, needed to consult stakeholders, industry players and interest groups on the provisions in the law”.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020 saw Vice President Dr Bawumia make a definite pronouncement to the effect that Okada will continue to be illegal under the NPP government and that government was going to find alternative and better means of addressing the employment challenges in the country.“I know that there’s been a recent discussion about Okada in Ghana, I think that in the context of what we are doing we will rather encourage the okada riders to come in and try to lease these vehicles so that they can run businesses. They need to graduate from this risky and less safe okada riding to a safer means of transportation. Their problem will be a lack of capital but if you bring in new leasing policies and we have our national ID cards with our digital addresses we can have a credit system working and give you an option other than this risky job”.

Reacting to claims that the government is not being consistent with its view on the matter, Pius Hadzide said that ‘the Transport Ministry was misunderstood”.

Hadzide said that the deliberations the government had with the industry players were to seek their view on issues within their space but not to legalise their operations. People did not really understand what the ministry said. Before John Mahama banned Okada, there was no law that made it illegal. Mahama brought that law and just after one election cycle he has changed his mind. Mahama’s government didn’t think through the law before implementing it.

“They work on impulse. The difference between them and us is that we don’t just do things, we discuss with the citizens. The Transport Ministry realised that there were issues that’s why in 2019, they consulted the industry players. The consultations gave us some of the findings we have now. The consultations didn’t mean that we were considering legalising okada. The Transport Minister was misunderstood. We only sought to establish that we follow due process in doing things”, he said on Okay FM

Copied from : Ghana web

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