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General News of Wednesday, 17 August 2016


People of Western Region unimpressed with gov’t road projects - NPP

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) says despite government's mantra of massive road projects, the people and chiefs of the Western Region are unhappy with the nature of their roads.

They expressed frustration when the NPP flagbearer, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo ended his five-day tour of the region.

Acting NPP General Secretary, John Boadu, said at a news conference held in Accra Wednesday that the people are depressed by the deplorable state of their roads they say is hampering socio-economic activity there.

“Nana Badu Kwesi Akontombra… [and other chiefs] all mentioned the bad state of their roads as their number one concern. How can a president who has made infrastructural projects his main campaign message think it is wise and decent to insult those who ask for the same thing?” he quizzed.

Debates over the nature of road networks in the country will be a major issue as the nation heads to the December polls. This is nothing new. It has been a major feature of Ghana’s politics.

In the lead up to the 2008 general election, then Vice Presidential Candidate and current President John Dramani Mahama slammed the NPP for showcasing its road projects in the country as one of its major achievements.

He said infrastructural development was a basic responsibility of every government, but nine years after he made that comment, President Mahama has been trumpeting road infrastructure as one of his main achievements rehashing the NPP’s statement.

As he hits the campaign trail ahead of the election to seek a second term, the President has been telling residents of Western Region that when it comes to infrastructural development, his government stands tall.

He said his main opponent, Mr Akufo-Addo, who rounded his tour of the region, did not see the achievements of the government because he slept on the tour.
Even when the chief of Mpohor itemized some areas in the region which have bad roads, the President assured them his government will fix the rest of the roads when given a second term.

He pointed to an ultra-modern administration block the government has constructed for the Wassa area to demonstrate some of his works.

In a sharp rebuttal, the NPP said the President might not be in touch with the reality in the region.

“He should tell that to the commercial drivers who spend over ten hours just to travel from Sefwi Wiawso to Takoradi the regional capital,” Mr Boadu said.
He believes the president's comments would anger the chiefs and their people especially considering the hardship they have to endure before getting their produce to the market.

According to him, Mr Akufo-Addo encountered for himself “how bad roads affect the economic and social activities of the communities there.”