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Opinion | Aug 3, 2018

Ghanaian Road Users Can File A Claim Against The Government For Bad Roads

The difference between an African bad road and a good road in Europe
The difference between an African bad road and a good road in Europe

Whoever says there is no corruption in Europe or America is a liar. There is massive corruption in the two continents. But the difference between corruption in Africa and that of Europe and America is they seek the interest of the people first while African leaders enrich themselves first before doing something or nothing significant for the suffering masses.

Europeans and Americans don’t cry for basic human necessities to be provided. It is their right to live like human beings, therefore, without any request, the governments provide those amenities to the people, while in Africa, including Ghana, the masses have to cry for whatever it is their right to give them comfort as human beings.

Why is it that Africa is full of shoddy projects and streets plenty of potholes when such things are rare in America and Europe? A European or American contractor executing a street project has in mind that if the street isn’t well done he will lose his contract license and if any pothole leads to an accident, the victim has right to sue the contractor or the government under which the street was made.

Thus, a European contractor, for example, will use 90 Euros out of the 100 Euros to construct the good road and put the 10 Euros in his pocket. But an African contractor will pocket 90 Euros and use only 10 Euros to execute the project. Because of the corruptible nature of African contractors, our roads are full of potholes and country full of shoddy projects which some don’t last a year.

Due to the lack of education, many Africans don’t even know their rights. If they know, Africa would have been a successful continent long ago. African drivers even don’t know that they need to sue the government or the Minister for Road and Transport if an accident is caused by a pothole in any part of Ghana.

The American and European road users know their rights and the governments know that any shoddy project could lead to court proceeding which will end up of paying large amounts of compensation to the victims. The reason potholes on European and American roads aren't common. Any bad road is quickly repaired to avoid any death or the payment of compensation.

Africans, including Ghanaians drivers, drive like James Bond because of potholes.

Right in the front of a school in Antwerp, there was a road work and one stone was accidentally left on the street. One of the ladies drove on the stone which damaged one of the vehicle's tyres. She first called the police to the school.

They came to see where the stone was left and immediately documents were prepared and she was awarded a compensated to get a new car tyre. In Europe or America, if your car is damaged because of poor road conditions, you can generally file a claim and lawsuit against the governmental entity (city, county, or state) that is in charge of maintaining that road.

Related topic: So You Think You Know How To Drive? - Modern Ghana

Ghana’s bad roads are killing passengers every day while the responsible corrupt politicians enjoy with impunity. If they know their rights and sue the government, drivers might have been enjoying good roads in the country by now. That will force contractors to avoid shoddy projects.

In Ghana, many road pits are left uncovered and pedestrians often fall and broke their leg. After this, it becomes the responsibility of the victim to pay for his medical cost. What a country or maybe a continent?

My question to African leaders, including the Ghanaian leader, Nana Akufo Addo is: When they travel to Europe or America, do they see the type of roads we have in Africa? Not at all, they enjoy pothole-free roads because it will cost the governments large sum of money to compensate any victim, yet bad roads are killing African road users while they ignorantly put the blame on the road users.

In advanced countries, the speed of motorists is regulated by traffic boards. In school areas, it demands 30 kilometers per hour, built up areas request 50 kilometers, while highways demand 70, 90, 100 and 120 kilometers per hour. Many African roads lack speed boards to regulate the speed of motorists, leading to horrible accidents.

There is no African politician interested in the poor masses or development in Africa, else the continent of African would have reached far. It doesn't make sense for a continent to have such a great vast of resources yet the continent can't progress.

Since corruption inspires African politicians, Africa's economy faces depression, while the poor masses suffer in silence. Why is Africa not moving forward? The answer is simple, if not corruption, then the people are choosing wrong leaders.

Joel Savage
Joel Savage, © 2018

Joel Savage is a Ghanaian-Belgian journalist and author. The accredited press-card holder of the Flemish Journalists Association once contributed regularly to the features column of the Daily Graphic, The Mirror, Ghanaian Times and the Weekly Spectator. The writer currently lives in Belgium.,

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