The Bawku Constituency branch of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) is distraught over the abandoned 103-kilometre Bolgatanga-Bawku-Pulmakon road project.
Stalling of the execution of the contract, it noted, was having dire consequences on the transportation business in the region, especially in the rainy season, as vehicles and other road commuters would have to wade in flood waters.
The issue, the party stressed, could expose commuters to serious health risk, hence the need for the government to show commitment by disbursing sufficient funds to enable the Brazilian contractor, Queiroz Galvao, to return to site to finish the “unfinished” business.
At a news conference held here in Zuarungu of the Upper East Region on Tuesday, the NDC described as sheer negligence the failure of government to make some financial commitment toward the completion of the project.
The Regional Communications Officer of the NDC, Jonathan Abdallah Salifu, said the government’s ambition to attaining a stable and prosperous country in the short run would be meaningless unless it was linked to prioritising major infrastructure road projects in the region, and showing total commitment in addressing some other peculiar challenges bedeviling the growth and progress of the region in other areas of national life.
Mr Salifu explained he was overwhelmed that the New Patriotic Party (NPP)-led administration was silent on the plight of poor road network in the region, adding that “no much commitment has been made for the region by the government in the 2023 budget statement, which showed neglect and gross disrespect to the people of the region.
He stated that the 103-kilometres Bolgatanga-Bawku-Pulmakon road project was awarded on contract to the Contructora Queiroz Galvao at an amount of GH¢612.7 million by the erstwhile Mahama-led administration on August 26, 2016.
According to him, works had effectively commenced on December 7, the same year, and the completion of the project was scheduled for June 4, 2019 and the contractor was paid advance mobilisation of GH¢91.91 million, representing 20 per cent of the original contract, and other payments were made, totalling the sum of GH¢122.51 million.
“On November 7, 2017, the Akufo-Addo-led administration, following non-payment of certificates raised by the contractor resulted in the suspension of the project. This led to the accumulation of considerable interest on the delayed payments, and slowed down work on the project during construction period.
“It is mind boggling the current government, which reviewed the project upon assumption of office, failed to see to its completion within scheduled time (17 months), after it was re-awarded at a cost of 135 million Euros, in March 2020,” Mr Salifu explained.
He described the phenomenon as lamentable, saying the stalling of the execution of the road infrastructure project was owed to the current economic meltdown. But the government had messed up the economy and left it in a state of suspended animation.
FROM FRANCIS DABRE DABANG, ZUARUNGURead Full Story