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Opinions of Saturday, 10 October 2020

Columnist: Melvin Tarlue, Contributor

Essikado-Ketan: The fastest growing constituency in Sekondi Takoradi under Joe Ghartey’s great leadership

Minister for Railways Development, Joe Ghartey speaking to some constituents Minister for Railways Development, Joe Ghartey speaking to some constituents

For sixteen years Joe Ghartey has offered humble, caring, and servant leadership to his people. Living right in the centre of town, next to the Essikado taxi rank the people appreciate his openness to all of them regardless of political persuasion. He attends the same Methodist Church at Essikado his great grandmother attended, where his grandmother was an organist and his mother was a chorister.

Despite the gross and yet obvious neglect by the Prof Mills- Mahama eight (8) years of political rule, which clearly was to sabotage his effort in ensuring a steady growth of a rather impoverished constituency, Joe Ghartey did not 'wither'.

It is said, his appointment as Attorney General and Minister of Justice under the John Agyekum Kufuor's administration, just in his first term threatened the National Democratic Congress (NDC). Having started off ambitiously with some key developmental projects that could drive the Essikado-Ketan Constituency in 2005, the change of government in 2008 gave the NDC the leverage to frustrate his work but this got him popular.

For eight solid years, the Essikado-Ketan Constituency was starved of development, a devious strategy to oust Mr. Ghartey.

So hypocritical of them [NDC] they turn to accuse Joe Ghartey of having 'failed' the constituents in terms of development. The NDC has taken up a crusade to create an erroneous impression that Joe Ghartey has nothing to show for his 16 years of being elected as their Parliamentary Representative.

"They might be truly ignorant of the realities, the change and progress the MP has made despite being 'enslaved' under Mills- Mahama's 8 years out of the 16 years he's had", Constituency Secretary, Thomas Amoah remarked.

To the residents who bear witnesses to the forceful attitude and honesty which Joe Ghartey has, and through his perseverance made the constituency an enviable one among several others in the Western Region, this propaganda doesn't fall flat. Testimonies abound of how he's supported hundreds of his constituents, - "from education, economic, legal and social, Joe Ghartey's impact story can hardly be told overnight" Queen-mother for Kasaworodo, Nana Akua Mensah III shared.

Just to name a few, the constituency has benefited from over two hundred and fifty (250) projects some of which are financed from Joe Ghartey's personal resources [most of which were executed whilst in opposition].

"So my promise to the people of taking the constituency on a new pedestal,... that promise which I made to keep faith with the people to ensure they get the development which they've been deprived of for the past years in opposition will be delivered under the promising leadership of President Akufo-Addo and the New Patriotic Party," Joe Ghartey said.

As shared by development consultants, the Essikado-Ketan Constituency has great potential and indeed the fastest growing area in the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolis. It is on this background that the MP finds prudent to match up infrastructure to propel the development of the area.

In terms of education, the constituency could boast of having two prominent tertiary institutions; the satellite campus for the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), and the latest addition, the Railway School of Technology and Infrastructure, in Essikado.

"...and there's more that has been provided for the people. More educational infrastructure, markets, roads, toilet facilities, sports make them, have been provided with more in the pipeline," Joe Ghartey added.


From 2005 to 2009 during the Kufuor Administration, several roads were constructed in Essikado Ketan. These include the Kojokrom to Essikado Road which prior to 2005 was a bush path. The Mpeasem Road, the Eshiem Road, the Anoe Road, and the Essikado to Sekondi College Road were all constructed. All these roads were left to deteriorate during the Mills-Mahama Era and it is under NPP that Essikado Ketan is seeing massive road infrastructure.

A section of them including the age-long Essikado to Kojokrom road have been completed, and the Kasaworodo -Mampong advancing steadily. These roads as captured under the 'Year of Roads' project will give the constituency a facelift, improve road accessibility. Several kilometers of road projects are being executed in the area.

Key considerations have been given to developing areas, as some link roads are being reshaped/rehabilitated.


With a combined resource (currently prefinanced from his personal resources) Joe Ghartey is 0utting up a new Community Health Post (CHPs) at Amor to improve health delivery in the area. Residents of the area and neighbouring communities have had to journey miles to either Kojokrom or Essikado Government Hospital to seek medical care when they fall ill. Most troubling was the fact that pregnant and expectant mothers had suffered the risk and complications associated with childbirth, for years due to the absence of this facility. The project began last two months and is at an advanced stage of completion.

To enhance the operations of the Ambulance Service, the MP is constructing a Bay at the Essikado Government Hospital. This among several others including the supply of biomedical supplies have been a topmost priority for Joe Ghartey.


He as an academician appreciates the need for continued investment in education infrastructure. Just in the past three years, Joe Ghartey has facilitated the construction of classroom infrastructure for all senior high schools in his jurisdiction. You may count of the Ahantaman Girls SHS, Adiembra SHS, Archbishop Porters, Fijai SHS, Methodist SHS, and among others. The junior high and basic schools have equally benefited. Below are some pictures.


Under the John Agyekum Kuffour's administration, one of the modern sports stadiums for the African Cup of Nation's Tournament which Ghana hosted in 2000 was built in Essipong. To add to this magnificent infrastructure, Joe Ghartey is facilitating the construction of two new Artificial Turfs; one is Fijai and another at Essikado. All these projects are almost completed.

Community Development

The commitment to build social infrastructure for the people could be seen in the Kojokrom, Mpentermsro, Nketsiakrom, Sofokrom communities. Ultra-modern community centers are being built in the above communities. That of Kojokrom, located at Jackson Park has been completed, and two others nearing completion.

Many more will commence, depending on availability of land and procurement processes.

Water and Sanitation

An out a dozen of institutionalized water systems and places of convenience, have completed, and a few undergoing construction. This initiative which is being financed under the one million dollars per Constituency programme will help eradicate the open defecation menace and improve sanitisation in beneficiary communities.


For the market women, Joe Ghartey has redeveloped and for some others constructed new markets to support their businesses. Mpintsin, Diabene, and Ketan Markets have all benefited from these projects.

And the list continues.

So the question is; 'Could these projects mean nothing?'

Surely, No! And the fact is that no amount of untruth spoken about Joe Ghartey's contribution to the development of the constituency will work.

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