No more mobiles on Ghana’s roads
TELECOMS| July 6, 2012, 10:11 a.m.
By Nana Appiah-Acquaye, Accra, Ghana
Ghana is enforcing a new law that bans the use of cellphones while driving - even with a hands-free kit.
The new road safety law amendments, which come into effect today, ban drivers from texting, accessing the internet or speaking on cellphones while driving.
The use of television monitors on dashboards of vehicles is also banned. Those caught contravening the new laws will be arrested and fined.
The law is intended to reduce the high rate of road accidents in Ghana. In 2011, the Motor Traffic and Transport Unit (MTTU) of the Ghana Police Service recorded about 2,330 fatalities and 13,572 road crashes nationwide.
While some motorists think the move is unnecessary and uncalled for and even infringes on the rights of drivers, many share the opinion with authorities that it’s a directive meant to curb the spate of accidents on our roads.
According to the Director of National Road Safety Commission (NRSC), Mary Obiri Yeboah, the law will be applied to all motorists, both private and commercial, to ensure total safety on the roads.
She said the use of mobile phone handsets while driving has been the cause of many accidents in the country. “Drivers are distracted when conversing or texting on their phones. They have being cautioned and persuaded to desist from talking on their mobile phone set or through their earpiece, but that even has yielded no result hence the implementation of this law,” she added.
But Yeboah was quick to point out that motorists with vehicles that have an inbuilt mobile phone receiver device will be free to use it.
Eddie Quaye, a mechanical engineer and host of a popular Auto Show on Vibe Fm a local radio station in Accra known as the “Car Doctor” disclosed to BiztechAfrica that there are flaws with the new law. He notes that the law allows law enforcement authorities to use mobile phones wile driving on duty, which he says will distract them as much as it would any other motorist.
He said it does not serve as a good example for motorist who will be seeing MTTU policemen using mobile gadgets at the same time directing or controlling traffic.
However the Command of the Motor Transport and Traffic Unite (MTTU) of the Ghana Police Service Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), Awuni Angwubutoge, told journalists in Accra after the announcement of the law that his department is committed to the enforcement of the law to the letter and that it will begin an intensive public education program across country to sensitize motorists to be aware of this new Road and Traffic Act now passed as Law in the country.
The law states that failure to comply will attract a fine not exceeding fifty penalty units or to a term of at most three months' imprisonment, or both.
MORE TELECOMS NEWS
Airtel Kenya formally introduces the new Chairman of the BoardAirtel has formally introduced the new Chairman of the Board to management and staff of Airtel Kenya. Read More
Vodacom Business Nigeria expands to Ibadan, KanoVodacom Business Nigeria has announced the opening of new offices in Ibadan and Kano as part of the company's expansion plans. Read More
Glo gets govt recognition for investment, job creationNigeria’s national operator, Globacom has been listed as one of the top One Hundred Firms in Nigeria for the 2014 fiscal year. Read More
Airtel Rwanda partners with TechWomen on mentorshipAirtel Rwanda has kicked off a two-week mentorship programme in partnership with TechWomen Rwanda, an organisation that aims to encourage more women in Rwanda to take on careers in the fields of Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics. Read More
Orange Business Services appoints new Vice President, AfricaOrange Business Services, the Orange branch dedicated to B2B services, has announced the appointment of Giorgio Heiman as Vice President of Africa, effective this month. Read More
Kenya govt gives go-ahead for security networkThe Government of Kenya has signed a landmark agreement with Safaricom for the roll out of a first-of-its-kind National Surveillance, Communication and Control System. Read More
Econet-Ericsson in new network dealEricsson has announced that it has been selected as the sole supplier by Zimbabwe's largest provider of telecommunications services, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe, for the company’s Core network upgrade programme. Read More
TNM courts trouble with investment prospects in ISPTNM, one of Malawi's two mobile telecommunication services providers, has courted trouble with its announcement of plans to invest in the provision of ‘generic’ Internet Service Provider (ISP) operations. Read More
Tigo deploys overhead fibre in GhanaTigo Ghana has embarked on an overhead fibre project in some parts of the country in a bid to reduce damage to its cables. Read More
Bharti Airtel appoints Dr. Titus Naikuni as Chairman, Airtel KenyaBharti Airtel has announced the appointment of Dr. Titus Naikuni as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Airtel Kenya. Read More
FEATURED STORYGSMA: half a billion mobile subscribers in SSA by 2020
The number of unique mobile subscribers in Sub-Saharan Africa will pass the half billion mark in 2020, says a new GSMA report.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAfrica lags on digital migration
Only three African countries have so far completed the digital migration process, and serious issues are hampering the migration in other nations.