wpid-iritate-drivers.jpgCape Coast is fast spreading with business and human activities, thereby throwing the Metropolis into a free-for-all trading arena, and congesting major roads in the town and exposing life and property to danger.
The Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly (CCMA) seemed to have allowed this indiscipline to assume alarming proportion, with virtually no precautionary or deterring procedures instituted by the Assembly to arrest the situation.
Since the Kotokoraba market was demolished last December and traders relocated to the Kotoka and the Radio Central Annex markets, some traders have defied the comfort of the two structures, and had instead laid siege on the entrances of the temporary facilities which are close to each other.
Shops, containers, tables and stalls have taken over the surroundings of the markets which the CCMA appeared to be looking on unconcerned, or maybe it had been overwhelmed by the magnitude of the events.
Their activities have been extended to portions of the Kotoka Drive, separating the two markets and narrowing the street, which sometimes ended up with motorists and pedestrians struggling for space.
The situation has created a regular vehicular and human congestion along that road, affecting the Tantri Road, which also links the Kotoka Drive.
This is also compounded by the vehicular and human traffic linking the John Evans Mills Avenue, through the loop at Kotokoraba, passing in front of Sonturk Supermarket and joining the Kotoka Drive.
On this route too, traders, especially in footwear have seized both sides of the already small road, making it more difficult for traffic to flow easily on that stretch of road.
The situation is no different along the Tantri Road, with shops and mini-markets spreading on both sides of the road stretching to link Ashanti Road.
As if that was not enough, some taxi drivers have turned a portion of that road, just opposite the entrance of the Tantri GPRTU station, into a taxi rank, almost occupying one part of the double road.
City authorities had on numerous occasions condemned the action of these taxi drivers, saying the taxi rank created there was against the law and had once driven them away, imposing fines on recalcitrant drivers.
Yet, after some few weeks, these drivers continue to operate at the same venue, taking a good portion of the double lane, and thereby causing traffic jam on that road.
Their presence there sometimes became an embarrassment to commuters who mostly arrive from Accra and Kumasi, by fighting and struggling with one another over who to offer ?dropping? services to the clients.
This same Tantri Road, from the HFC Bank towards the Ashanti Road at the Mrs. Entsil Bakery, vehicles are allowed to park on the road, making traffic thick, and sometimes motorists needed to meander their way on this double lane.
Going forward on this road towards the Barclays Bank, fish mongers had also forced a market on one lane of the road, leaving the other for motorists and other road users to share.
Many a social commentators had kicked against that practice, stressing it posed danger to life and property, but that also seemed to have fallen on deaf ears.
Elsewhere in the Metropolis, taxi drivers flout all traffic regulations and stop at any point on a wave of hand of a passenger, sometimes right on the road, and compounding the already congested traffic situation.
On confronting most of these cabbie drivers on their indiscipline on the roads, their responses had been the same; ?the roads are small and do not have parking spaces.?
Police personnel and City Guards deployed in town, for what specific tasks the citizenry could not explain, looked on while motorists abuse the roads.
Coconut sellers are also having a field day plying their trade on this same street, in front of the Electricity Company of Ghana headquarters and on the De-Graft Johnson Avenue, towards the First and Second Ridges.
These sellers occupy part of the road at the Ewim PolyClinic junction, sometimes creating congestion at the area, and exposing themselves, motorists, their customers and other pedestrians to danger from oncoming vehicles.
The area is also always littered with heaps of coconut husks, which are left un-swept after their days? activities, creating debris all over the place.
When asked if the place they plied their trade posed any threat to life and property, Kwesi Amoako, one of the coconut sellers told the Ghana News Agency (GNA), ?The Assembly takes tolls from us so they should relocate us to a safer place.?
The activities of these coconut sellers make it difficult for vehicles to make U-turns from the other road to the one where the sellers had adopted for their business.
Vehicles that wished to make U-turns had to stop in the middle of the busy road, reverse and make the final bend on a second attempt; putting the lives of motorists, passengers, pedestrians and properties in danger.

Road markings such as the ?Zebra Crossing,? ?No Parking,? ?No Stopping? And ?No Waiting? had all gone missing on the roads with time.
Last year, the Assembly, together with the Regional Police Command embarked on a decongestion exercise to make the Metropolis free for traffic flow, but the process had stalled without any knowledge of when it was going to be revived.
When contacted, the public relations office of the CCMA Mr Nicholas Addo, declined to comment on the issue.
The GNA is of the opinion that if the CCMA was to maintain and sustain its Metropolitan status, then it must wake up from its slumber and inject discipline and sanity into the system to justify its current status and give commuters and the public the desired decorum to go about their activities devoid of indiscipline and obstructions.

GNA

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