Motorcycle Taxis in the Provision of Rural Public Transport Services; A Case Study of Selected Towns in the Volta Region of Ghana

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May, 2016
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Rural transportation problems and mobility challenges have led to increasing patronage of motorcycle taxi services by rural residents. This research investigated the increasing use of motorcycletaxis in some rural communities in the Volta Region and made appropriate recommendations to impact policy formulation. Questionnaires administered to three groups, namely; motorcycle taxi riders, motorcycle taxi users/non-users and taxi/trotro drivers in the towns of Sogakope, Dzodze, Akatsi, Adidome, Abor, and Mafi-Kumase, all in the Volta Region regarding motorcycle taxi transport.It was established that services provided by motorcycle taxis in these areas were for the conveyance of both passengers and goods. The latter, involved movement of goods to and from the markets and farms.Other services offered by the motorcycle taxis include the transportation of construction materials (e.g. cement, roofing sheets, and steel reinforcements rods), farming tools, coffin,and water. It was found that 85% of motorcycle taxi riders were below the age of 30 years,which is indicative of the fact that the services offered employment for the youth. Fifty-eight percent of motorcycle taxi riders own their motorcycles while the rest either acquired them through some form of hiring/rental agreement. Of the riders, 94% possessed no formal riding license. Daily users constitute 43.7% of all users and mostly use the services for short tripsthat last under 30minutes. Sixty-one percent of motorcycle taxi users found the services provided to be satisfactory whiles 23% found it to be unsatisfactory. Generally, patrons indicated the need to address the problem of reckless riding.An overwhelming majority of respondents were aware of the illegality of the motorcycle taxi services. However, there were mixed reactions as to whether the operations should be legalized or not. Motorcycles taxi riders expressed full support for the legalization and training to enhance safety of operations. Most trotro drivers (over 80%) also supported the regularization of the services with appropriate enforcement and regulations, as in their view, the motorcycle taxis have come to stayand offer useful transportation services to rural communities that are difficult to serve by trotros and taxis because of the poor nature of the roads and low demand.
A Thesis Submitted to the Department of Civil Engineering College of Engineering in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science Road and Transportation Engineering.