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Regional News of Saturday, 27 June 2020

Source: Ato KEELSON, Contributor

Fix our roads or forget election 2020! — 8 communities in Ga West warn Govt

Though the Akufo-Addo administration has tagged 2020 as a “Year Of Roads,” signifying a clear intent to embark on an aggressive road development across the country, residents in some eight communities in the Ga West Municipal Assembly (GWMA), Greater Accra Region, feel neglected in that package.

According to residents in these communities including Manhean, Oduman, Afuaman, Peace Village, Ablekuma Abaase, Joman, Borkorborkor and Nsakina—all in the GWMA— the current administration has completely turned a blind eye to their deplorable roads.

Consequently, the youth in these areas have warned the Electoral Commission (EC) to forget about election 2020 if the central government fails this time around to have their roads fixed.

In particular, Manhean residents bashed their current Assembly member, Nathaniel Nii Lomotey Tetteh (also known as Nii Bii Nii), for the Manhean Electoral Area.

They stated that they were very disappointed in him, particularly when he had led series of protests for the main roads linking these communities to be constructed even before he was elected to become the assembly man.

“Nii Bii Nii or whatever he calls himself is a big disappointment. His conduct since he became the assembly man for the Manhean Electoral Area confirms that all politicians are the same—they only think of their stomachs and that of their immediate families! And instead of serving his constituents, he was rather lording himself over them. He should be mindful that four years was just around the corner! A resident of Manhean, Ama Darkoa, angrily expressed.

In fact, the residents, motorists and commuters in the above communities have continued to lament the deplorable state of their roads, causing them untold hardships everyday.

The inner roads of these areas which serve as links to the main Ablekuma Curve-Afuaman, Ablekuma Curve-Joman and Obeyeye-Afuaman roads were very bad and dangerous.

For these main roads—Ablekuma Curve-Afuaman, Ablekuma Curve-Joman and Obeyeye-Afuaman—they have become death traps waiting to wreak havoc on innocent residents who ply on them.

From every corner of these communities—Manhean, Nsakina, Borkorborkor, Joman, Oduman Ablekuma Abaase, Afuaman and Peace Village—it has been vexed lamentations from residents and motorists over persistent vehicle damage and loss of man hours on the two main roads—Ablekuma Curve-Afuaman and Obeyeye-Afuaman roads.

And what has even aggravated an already bad situation for the residents is the coming down of the rains. This year’s rains has rendered the two major roads connecting thousands of residents in these communities virtually impassable, with pregnant women especially, bearing its harsh brunt.

According to the residents, if the rains continue in the coming days, these communities would eventually be cut off from the rest of Accra. They added that they would not be surprised if commercial vehicles decide not to ply on the major roads in these communities.

Furthermore, motorists, commercial bus drivers, motorcyclists in the above communities have described particularly the state of the Abekuma Curve-Afuaman and Afuaman-Obeyeyie roads as nightmarish. A resident in Manhean, Nii Akwando, contended that their roads had completely been neglected, causing loads of nightmares to users.

“For instance, the Manhean-Ablekuma Curve road linking the Pokuase-Awoshie road is not only bad but a killer!” Many accidents on motorcycles happen on our road during the raining seasons and we have cried out but government has ignored us,” Edu Gyamfi, a resident in Afuaman, while commenting on the road, lamented.

He continued: “You can see the state of the roads within Oduman, Manhean, Peace Village, Afuaman among others. We don’t have roads and that is why we often abandon our cars at home whenever we know that the communities we are visiting have impassable roads. And for those that are still motorable, one would have to master the potholes and others.”

The residents on their part could not understand why they deserve neglect from the government, a situation they described their communities as axis ruled by potholes.

In fact, the main Ablekuma Curve-Afuaman road was in a terrible condition. This road is not only littered with potholes but what communities along the road have described as “manholes.”

A commercial driver, Egya Mensah, who spoke with this reporter at Manhean, said Abelkuma Curve-Manhean road was not suitable for motorists.

“All communities that use this main road are forgotten communities. What I can say is that we are not part of the country called Ghana. If that is not the case then why have successive governments including the current one not fixed our roads?” Egya Mensah angrily quizzed.

Also, a resident in Ablekuma Abaase, Eric Obeng, complained that the roads within his area were in deplorable state, but added that: “the road from Ablekuma Curve to Afuaman especially, was begging for attention.”

The body pains experienced by commuters and the damage to vehicles of all shapes and sizes caused by potholes on the Ablekuma Curve-Afuaman road had become unbearable, according to the residents.

And anytime passengers board commercial vehicles plying on this road, the conversations have not shied away from the jerky nature of the road.

For private individuals who have their own cars the best option under the prevailing circumstance had been to park their cars and join tro-tros (commercial buses) to their places of work.

Roads in the Ablekuma-Manhean enclave have become a subject of many demonstrations by residents who have constantly complained about the dangers the roads have posed to them over the years.