RESIDENTS of towns and villages on the bank of the Black Volta which fall within the Mepe and Mafi Traditional Areas in the North and Central Tongu Districts of the Volta Region, have stated categorically that they have been neglected in this year’s road construction development agenda by the Akufo-Addo administration christened: ‘Year of Road.’
According to the residents, even though President Akufo-Addo has declared 2020 as “Year Of Roads,” signifying his movement to carry out massive road infrastructure development across the sixteen regions of the country, they have been completely left out of this national package.
The development, according to the former Assembly member of Mepe Adudornu Electoral Area, Mr David Yawli, on behalf of the residents in the affected communities, has been compounded with the fast deteriorating condition of their road network.
Mr Yawli cited the complete abandonment of works on the 65-kilometre road rehabilitation project being carried out by Supreme Bird Investment Limited from Mafi-Adidome through Mepe Adexor-Horkpo- Frankadua in the Asuogyaman District of the Eastern Region.
He explained that work has come to a halt on this 65-kilometre road from Mafi-Adidome to Frakadua because of the refusal of the Ministry of Roads and Highways to release funds to pay the contractor, Supreme Bird Investment Limited.
Meanwhile, scores of residents in the affected areas have lamented that the situation was seriously affecting them, as they have been completely cut off from other satellite communities where they could go and sell or buy foodstuffs and also for healthcare services.
According to a resident of Mepe, Mensah Manuagbe Godzo, it was sad that the Akufo-Addo administration has completely failed to have their road problem fixed.
This reporter discovered that communities on the bank of the Black Volta which have been hard hit included Mepe-Dudevi, Atitetey, Adexorkpodzi, Adexor, Manase, Bage, Adidovenu, Adudornu, Zortikpo, Dofor-Adidome, Podoe amongst others which are all in the North Tongu District.
Consequently, the chiefs, youth and eligible voters in these areas have sounded a strong warning to officials of the Electoral Commission (EC) to forget about conducting this year’s polls in their communities, if the government of President Akufo-Addo fails this time around to have their deplorable road situation addressed.
“If you [referring to President Akufo-Addo] do not have our road fixed then the EC has no business coming to our communities to conduct elections. Because we in the Volta Region are fed-up with empty electioneering promises,” a resident of Atitety, Koku Awuku, cautioned.
In the same vein, the residents also lashed out at the District Chief Executive (DCE) of North Tongu District Assembly, Mr Richard Collins Arku, and the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Tongu Constituency, Mr Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa.
They accused the two of turning deaf ears to their plight of having the road linking Mafi-Adidome through Dofor to Frakadua enclaves constructed.
They stated that they were very disappointed in their DCE, who doubles as the parliamentary candidate on the ticket of the NPP for the North Tongu Constituency, particularly during his campaign in 2016 when he made series of promises for the road to be done.
A farmer at Adudornu, Victor Akwetea, did not spare the owner of the Supreme Bird Investment Limited, Mr Stephen Kweku Atatsi, blaming him partly for unnecessarily delaying the road project.
However, in his reaction, the Manager of Supreme Bird Investment Limited, Mr Stephen Kweku Atatsi, told DAILY Analyst that it was unfortunate that the residents were attributing the delay of fixing the road to him.
He asked the residents to impress upon the ministry of roads and highways to release funds for the road to be completed.
“It is not my personal will to delay this project for the people in these communities. The truth of the matter is that the Ministry of Roads and Highways has not paid me part payment of the work l have done so far,” Mr Atatsi, who doubles as the National Chairman of Ghana Association of Contractors Limited, stated.
He went on to state that despite assurances from the government to road contractors that they would receive part-payment for their contractual monies, his outfit was yet to receive half payment of the work it has done.