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Politics of Sunday, 30 October 2016


Ghanaians short-changed on Kumasi Airport refurbishment - NPP

Henry Nana Boakye, member of the Communications team of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Henry Nana Boakye, member of the Communications team of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP)

A member of the Communications team of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Henry Nana Boakye popularly called ‘Nana B’ has stated that Ghanaians were short changed by the Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) on the refurbishment of the Kumasi airport in the Ashanti region.

Nana B observed that government failed to give value for money on the rehabilitation of the airport, saying he is scandalised about government’s request for additional loan to fund the same airport.

According to him, the price was inflated and that government is only interested in piling up debt on tax-payers and later reaping them off their meager earnings.

Juxtaposing Ghana to other countries, he said governments in other countries are able to spend $22 million dollars in building new airports whiles Ghana only renovates with $29 million dollars.

‘For the Kumasi Airport I am even scandalised, what was done there, for me its mind boggling, they spent about $29 million dollars just on the runway and fixing some bulbs, and they wrote international airport that cannot be seen. Go to Kumasi and see if it has that status. You spend that amount on refurbishment when other companies are putting up fresh airports for like $22 million dollars. That transaction we were short changed, we were robbed. Additional money for Kumasi airport.. I don’t get it, I think it is rushed,’ he fumed.

Government has received backlash from a section of Members of Parliament (MPs) and the public for demanding approval of some $900 million dollar loan before Parliament rises on Friday.

The loans are expected to fund projects such as the Accra urban transport project, Kumasi Airport, Volivo bridge, UMaT, Kommenda sugar factory, railway line, Tamale Airport, audit service among others.

But speaking on GH One’s State of Affairs hosted by Nana Aba Anamoah, Nana B bemoaned the inflated money already spent on the refurbishment of the Kumasi Airport.

Mr Boakye who believes part of the money ended up in some unmanned pockets, said part of it could have been invested in other developmental projects.

He wondered why government would claim to have spent $29 million dollars on renovation of only the runway and turned round to ask Parliament to approve an additional loan which will fund the Kumasi Airport.

Nana B questioned the money government would have used if it was to have built a new Airport in Kumasi, kicking against the idea of government pressurising MPs to approve the loan when the country has barely 40 days to go to the polls.

‘As at 2015 if you consider the interest we are piling under the NPP, the total amount of interest rate amounted to 18 million Ghana cedis, now in NDC in 216 alone, we are paying 10.5 billion Ghana cedis. Six times the oil revenue we have now. Where are we running to, why are we piling all this debt. For me it is worrying, you would expect that the MPs would have to thoroughly examine it for just one week,’ he said.

In a rebuttal, the Tamale North Parliamentary candidate of NDC Alhassan Suhuyini said there is nothing wrong for government to request for additional loan to work on second phase of the Tamale and Kumasi airports.

According to him, the decision is in the right direction as the Accra urban transport project would help solve the perennial flooding situation in the metropolis.

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