The Deputy Minister of Finance and Member of Parliament for Ejisu Constituency, John Kumah has declared that the Minister of Roads and Highways has unrestricted powers to make decisions within the laws of Ghana.
According to the Minister, Roads and Highways Minister has been
given the mandate to fix road tolls, and has equal discretion to suspend the
collection of tolls on our roads.
His comment comes after the Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin,
directed the Minister of Roads and Highways to reverse the directive on cessation of road tolls until Parliament provides appropriate legislation.
Bagbin said it is only proper for the minister to reverse the
directive on the end of public road tolls because Parliament is yet to approve
the 2022 Budget.
However, speaking in an interview with the Accra-based Asaase
Radio on Thursday 18th November 2021, Kumah explained: “I believe that
once he’s been given the mandate to fix road tolls, he also has the discretion
to suspend the collection of road tolls.
“So, if he has erred, or somebody thinks contrary, you can go to
court. It is the court that has the right to determine whether a minister’s
decision was made contrary to the law.
To err is human … but did he err?
“He is the minister, so he is allowed within the laws to use his
discretionary powers to take actions within the law,” Kumah said. “So, if, in
his mind, this is the right thing to do, he’s allowed within the law to make
“Judges make errors even in their decisions. Ministers are also
entitled to make errors. Granted that maybe he even erred,” Kumah said.
However, former MP for Tamale Central, Inusah Fuseini,
argued that the move by the Roads Minister is merely populist.
“If the Minister of Roads and Highways wanted to do what he did,
he should have sought legal advice from the Attorney General. This populist
move and action will not augur well for a public officer who flouts the law.
“You need to make rational and legal decisions, decisions based on
the legal regime that exists,” Fuseini said.
Source: Opemsuo.com/ Emmanuel Owusu Anti.