CNG Gas-powered Motorised Rickshaws: Okada Problem's Solution

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2013-03-28 21:12:41
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CNG Gas-powered Motorised Rickshaws: Okada Problem


I've been pushing your suggestion for many years now, dating back to the '90s. See below a cut-off from Part 2 of an article I had published on ModernGhana on rural devt. It came with suggestions for raising the necessary finance.



ON ACCESS ROADS. Rural people cannot be expected to use their cutlasses and hoes, with some few spades thrown in, to construct feeder roads from their homes to their farms. In most districts a bulldozer, a grader and a couple of tipper trucks thrown in for those far from laterite soil, would go a long way in greatly alleviating the problem of access roads to the remote farming areas, not to mention from the villages to the trunk roads. With these facilities, the people can then be mobilised to contribute the necessary labour to clear and widen the footpaths to distant farms into adequate "motorable" roads.

But wait a moment! What sort of vehicles are suited for these access roads? Certainly not the expensive and luxurious Landcruisers and other heavy vehicles presently in use on our roads, but very light means of transportation. We must think of providing for these rural "roads" two- and three-wheeled bicycles and rickshaws as already used on Asian roads, and two- and three-wheeled motor bikes and scooters with or without carriages. The heaviest vehicle must be the light three wheeled vehicles common on Asian streets fitted with carriages and roofs for these unmacadamised roads. It is important that heavy vehicles such as timber trucks, except tractors, be kept away from these access roads.

Tarring will eventually come, when increased economic activities provide the means to meet much of the cost, thereby avoiding crippling national debts due to external loans. A young woman can easily paddle a rickshaw with the fire-wood or harvested crops in the carriage to the house or market, and gone are the days of human beings as beasts of burden.

What is singular is that Ghana has the technological skill and infrastructure to produce or assemble these means of transportation locally. With the resultant boost in industrial production for the existing and new assembly plants suitably located in the district capitals, the workshops of mechanics and the local blacksmiths will all have their hands full with manufacturing these vehicles, repairing and making parts for them. The aim is to provide alternative means of gainful employment for the rural school leavers.

My focus is on the rural areas, not the cities.


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