The Ranking Member on Parliament’s Roads and Transport Committee, Kwame Governs Agbodza has assured Ghanaians that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) will put safety at the centre of the law that will legalise okada if voted into power.
Speaking on Citi TV/Citi FM‘s news analysis programme, The Big Issue on Saturday, Mr. Agbodza assured that all concerns raised over the safety of okada will be considered during processes for the passage of the law.
“Indeed, motorbikes do not have the protection you have in a vehicle. I think the NDC is quite clear on this, and we fully understand the concerns of Ghanaians on the issue of safety. The new law that will be passed will put safety at the heart of that legislation and enforcement of whatever we propose,” he said.
Mr. Agbodza gave the assurance on the back of the unending debate over whether or not to legalise okada in Ghana.
This debate has been triggered by a promise by flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress, John Dramani Mahama, to legalise such business should he be voted as President on December 7, 2020.
Okada business is currently outlawed in Ghana following a law passed in 2012.
He insisted that such a new law to legalise okada is long overdue since such business has 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.
However, the promise has been met with varied opinions.