Prez Akufo Addo, where are the concrete roads?

President Nana Akufo-Addo ended a 3-day tour of the Western Region and as part of his itinerary cut sod for the construction of two roads; 25km Asankragua – Fordjuorkrom road in the Amenfi West constituency and the 24.3km Kojina-Chirano-Akoti road in the Bibiani-Anhwiaso -Bekwai constituency.

According to the President, construction of the roads is to open up the region.

Now, newsmen who covered the sod cutting exercises reported that the projects which are to be completed in 2 years would see bitumen surfacing.

The above indication, if indeed the case clearly contradicts Vice President, Dr. Bawumia’s April 2017 announcement that the Akufo Addo’s government was switching to the policy of building concrete roads in the country.

“It [building concrete roads] will be transformational because as for laying concrete, we can all do it in Ghana. You don’t need to get anybody to come and lay concrete for you. Any mason from any village can come and lay the concrete and go on,” Dr Bawumia stated at the Qodesh branch of the Lighthouse Chapel.

He explained that, following the costing, government realized that 1km of a concrete road will cost $3.8million and will last 40years but that of asphalt will cost $2.8million but will take only 10years, adding “ So $3.8m for 40years and $2.8m for 10years – the economics is very simple.”

Indeed, as we are well aware that the majority of the country’s resources are from the Western Region coupled with a careful consideration for the type of vehicles that are carting the resources, there is no gainsaying that the region really deserves a concrete road project.

It therefore beats my imagination, that 13 long months after the Dr. Bawumia announcement, the government will sidestep its own “transformational policy,” particularly at a time and place it is most needed. Were we deceived? That announcement in Qodesh over a year ago was a phantom?

It seemed so. Why? President Akufo Addo after denying the region what it rightly deserve, stood somewhere on the last day of the tour to suggest the 2 roads he broke grounds for are indications of massive road development in the Western Region.

Not an asphalt road which Dr Bawunia claim gets destroyed in no time, not concrete but meagre 49km road bitumen surfacing for the entire region in 4years and that is what Prez Akufo Addo describes as massive. That comes no-where near John Mahama’s ambitious 110km Agona Junction – Elubo road project and the 94km Tarkwa – Bogoso – Ayamfuri – Asanwinso road and the many cocoa road projects aggressively tackled in the same region.

Alhaji ABA Fuseini says when President Akufo Addo and his Vice greet good morning; one would have to pause to check the direction of the sun before responding to avoid being misled.

A Government who’s laziness surpasses that of the manhood of a Buckingham Palace eunuch; cannot perform. Nothing much to show in 18 long months in power. Free SHS has major issues including infrastructure, parents having to cough up money for books and upkeep of their wards due to Government’s inability to meet the needs.

HE John Mahama’s requests for a national dialogue for a better Free SHS have gone unheeded.

Promises including One chocolate per child; One village One dam; One district One factory; $1million per constituency; providing Ghanaians security in their homes and everywhere; to refund DKM/God is Love etc scam victims savings, to fast-track the Eastern corridor road, Ho – Sokode dual carriageway, UHAS bypass, among others have all become illusion.

COCOABOD CEO, Joseph Boahen Aidoo claimed Volta Region produces no cocoa to benefit from cocoa road projects, a reason for which he ordered contractors fixing the cocoa road lots of the Eastern corridor road to stop work, leaving the road in a much deplorable condition.

In the face of incessant complaints over the roads, the VR Minister promised the Eastern corridor road contractors and others would return to site in 2 weeks but has taken over 2 months now. What I have since seen was a rickety truck filled with chippings with a handful of men disgracefully patching the Sokode Lokoe section of the all-important but abandoned Ho – Sokode road.

I get the impression Dr. Achibald Letsa cares little or not about the development of the Region. His satisfaction seemed to lie only in the promotion of his hotel and shopping mall businesses and funfair, not the wellbeing of the people. I encountered his convoy a couple of times; a minimum of 4 vehicles including a Toyota Tundra for his 4-man security detail; unprecedented in the region, he is perhaps emulating his brother President. They look alike or?

I have said the resources being spent on the Minister’s oversize security team and the fuel consuming Tundra could have partly settled the labour cost of the stalled Ho – Sokode road project. Government is voted for to think. This is a leadership matter to which the suffering masses must rise to reject the crass incompetence, arrogance and the self-serving attitude of the “Akpefu Addo government.” [Akpefu in Ewe means being subjected to suffering]

The #Akpefu Addo Government was coined by Agbozume – Denu – Aflao old ladies, came alive at the massive NDC Unity Walk in Aflao. The old ladies really made my day. Kudos to them!

Writer: Koku Mawuli Nanegbe

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