Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Member of Parliament for the North Tongu Constituency is calling on President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s government to expedite final compensation to his constituents who have given up their homes, shops and farms for the construction of Tema-Mpakadan rail intervention to see the light of day.
The Member of Parliament who visited the construction site to ascertain the effects of the project on his constituents as a way of assessing at first hand, community concerns related to challenges associated with ongoing rail construction in his beloved Constituency thus; Juapong and it’s immediate environs said, it is very necessary for government to improve community access routes for residents when carrying out major projects.
Mr. Ablakwa in a statement said, “While commending government for continuing with this particular railway project, it is clear authorities must do better to improve community access routes especially for children who commute to school daily.”
The North Tongu MP reassured his beloved constituents that, he will continue to pursue these critical matters towards an eventual win-win outcome for all parties in our collective national interest.
Speaking to some of the residents, they believe that, this is another reflexivity issue identified by the affected communities. According to them, though their concerns are what come to affect government projects, it’s time government incorporate community concerns (reflexives) into projects planning before executing.
“It is important to fully implement recommendations of an environmental and social impact assessment of any project to mitigate the effects such a project or policy will have on the affected communities. We strongly believe that, the MP’s call is a step in the right direction” Some residents told Coverghana.com.gh
Meanwhile, some opinion leaders indicated that, it is high time the North Tongu District Assembly in collaboration with all authorities that matters in handling such issues constitute proper planning committee to demarcate roads on lands before being sold.
ABOUT THE TEMA-MPAKADAN RAILWAY LINE
The Tema-Mpakadan rail line is part of the 1,000km Ghana-Burkina Faso Railway Interconnectivity Project expected to connect Ghana and Burkina Faso from Tema to Burkina Faso’s capital Ouagadougou.
According to reports, the two countries had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in January 2017 in Ouagadougou to kick-start the project.
Reports available to Coverghana.com.gh suggests that, way back December 2019, the Railways Minister disclosed that twenty-eight (28) kilometres of track have been laid, with the contractor assuring that 40 more kilometres of the track will be completed by the end of 2020.
According to the government’s plans, some 800km of the railway line will be in Ghana’s territory while the remaining 200km will be on Burkinabe soil.
The ongoing Tema-Mpakadan rail projects was expected to be completed in August 2020 but was halted after seventy (70) workers on the construction team tested positive for Coronavirus.
According to the Railway Minister, Hon. John Pater Amewu, the Eastern Region stretch of the Tema-Mpakadan Railway track costing $230 million has reached Mpakadan. He disclosed that, the project when completed will greatly boost the local economy when it is opened. Metal fabrication works are currently ongoing to erect the high beams that will hold the rail bridge in place.
According to Ghana Railway Development Authority (GRDA) the Tema-Mpakadan railway project is currently over 80% complete; the completion and handover of this railway line are scheduled for November this year.
The 100km Akosombo-Mpakadan railway line is the beginning of the 1,000km Ghana-Burkina Faso railway interconnectivity project, by the year 2022, construction work is scheduled to start on the remaining portions of this intercontinental line.