Road contractors have disclosed that government hasn’t made payments to them since 2018, a situation that is adversely affecting their work amid the economic downturn.
Vice Chairman of the Association of Road Contractors disclosed this state of affairs in an interview with Akoma FM over the weekend.
According to its Vice Chairman, Stephen Atatsi, the non-payment and lack of assurance to settle same was in part frustrating but more critically impacting their livelihoods.
“Since 2018, government hasn’t paid a penny to us and owes us millions of dollars. The amount is as a result of delayed payment and accumulation of interest on certificates locked up at the sector ministry.
He stated further that due to the debt burden on members who had taken huge loans and the attendant interest they are faced with, most of them have been traumatized.
Others he noted had been hospitalized due to depression and frustration because of pressure from banks and other creditors.
“Some of the members are now living from hand to mouth because government has refused to pay huge amount of debt owed them. Some even cannot afford to buy their medical bills, so we are really going through a lot this is not fair,” he stressed
He appealed to government to settle the four-year debt to help alleviate the suffering and hardships that members were going through especially with the current economic slump.
E-Levy as a route to settle debts
The Electronic Transaction Levy as contained in the 2022 budget was mentioned as a key revenue generation measure to help government settle debts owed contractors.
In February 2022, whiles addressing the leadership of the Road Contactors Association, Minister of Roads, Kwasi Amoako-Atta said a number of deplorable roads will be fixed when the E-Levy is implemented.
“When the E-levy is implemented, the road sector will get its fair share. All contractors owed by the government will be paid.
“A number of deplorable roads will be fixed when the E-Levy is introduced because all contractors we owe will be paid. You are going to benefit directly from its implementation. No serious government will joke with its contractors,” he said at the time.