The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has pledged to find the resources to complete the Eastern Corridor Roads, explaining that it is a strategic road that would provide a much shorter and cheaper link between the southern and northern parts of our country, and a suitable, alternative route for Ghana’s land-locked neighbours.
According to President Akufo-Addo, unfortunately, this network of roads has suffered from deliberate, unproductive propaganda, adding that it is hard to believe that, at a time when cocoa prices were going down, contracts were awarded for three sections of the road to be funded by COCOBOD.
“It comes as no surprise that COCOBOD has issued directives to suspend work on all three sections, which come up to almost 100 kilometres. Mr Speaker, we are determined to find the needed resources to complete the Eastern Corridor roads. As I have heard it said among the Ewes, that which is important, you cook in an important pot,” he said.
The President continued, “There is a crying need for work to be done on all our roads. The Western Corridor, the Central Corridor, trunk roads, feeder roads, town roads, around the country, all require urgent attention. We are determined to bring our road network to a befitting status, and this year we shall witness much more activity on the roads.”
President Akufo-Addo made this known on Thursday, 8th February, 2018, when he delivered his Message on the State of the Nation in Parliament.
Considering the country’s current economic circumstances, President Akufo-Addo indicated that Ghana is turning her attention to private sector participation to raise the funds to do what needs to be done.
“I must make mention of the work being done to restore the Accra-Tema motorway to its iconic status. With help from Japan, a loyal friend of Ghana, work is starting to build a three-tier interchange at the motorway roundabout, and the plans for expansion into a six-lane motorway will be implemented from this year,” he said.
The President indicated that “if we are to open up our country, we have to build a fast, safe and reliable railway network.”
Recounting the brave assertion he made, in Parliament in 2017, by stating that the Takoradi to Paga railway would be initiated in the year 2017, President Akufo-Addo told Parliament that progress is being made on the project.
“We are in the final stages of agreeing with a significant investor the terms of a BOT Agreement, from Takoradi to Kumasi, which will be presented to Parliament this session. There is already a contractor on site for the construction of the Kojokrom to Manso section of the Takoradi to Kumasi rail line,” he said.
The President continued, “The process has commenced to select a suitable partner for the construction of the Eastern Line, from Accra to Tema to Kumasi. We aim to break ground this year. The Central Spine, from Kumasi to Paga, is also receiving attention, and consultants have been engaged to advise government on the best model for the development of the line.”
With reference to the Ghana and Burkina Faso rail interconnectivity, President Akufo-Addo added that thetwo countries are in earnest discussions as to the realisation of the project, with fortnightly meetings, taking place in Accra or Ouagadougou, adding that “we are confident that deliberations will conclude, and actual construction will commence by the third quarter of this year.”