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Regional News of Thursday, 11 January 2018

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Decongestion exercise: We will not pay attention to any distraction - AMA


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Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Mohammed Adjei Sowah has said the outfit will not be moved by complaints from some victims of the decongestion exercise it embarked on days ago.

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) Thursday pulled down dozens of illegal structures situated along the railway lines at Odorna, close to the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange in Accra.

The demolishing exercise being led by the Mayor of Accra with support from Police officers and metro guards pushed on to its second phase after it began on Monday.

The displaced squatters and traders around the area who put up the unauthorised structures mainly made with wood lamented that they have unfairly been treated by authorities as they were given a short notice to evacuate the place.

According to them, they were unable to salvage some of their properties from the structures which have been reduced to the ground. They have however threatened to stage a demonstration to the Presidency for betraying them after winning power.

But speaking at a media briefing, the Chief Executive of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly, Mohammed Adjei Sowah said government is not perturbed by the actions of the unauthorized settlers in the area.

According to him, Odorna among other areas within the metropolis is a hub for all sort of social vices which pose a threat to other users of the area and government will stand his ground to make sure the area is cleared to make way for other developments.

“It’s a citywide strategy to create order to instill discipline in Accra so it is not touching base of one area and leaving the other. We are gradually moving to the outskirt of the city. Odorna has become a hub for criminals and all social vices happening in that particular enclave, indeed we want to get rid of it,” he noted.

“I have stated it time and again that collectively as a people we should decide which way to go. We have decided to go on the tangent of instilling discipline and ensuring that live in an environment free and fair, that is the way we want to go and we are soliciting for your support”.

We are aware of certain destructions that will come our way, we will not pay attention to those things but poised that we achieve our aim,” he added.

Responding to government’s intention for the area, Mr Sowah stated that the AMA has been given the mandate to undertake the exercise to ensure that government’s move to revamp the Railway sector is bolted.

Mr. Sowah indicated that, “the Ordona enclave is a property of the Ghana Railway Company and over a long period of time we have been hesitant wanting to get an assurance from the Railways Company that indeed we are going to protect their property.”

“Until the Minister for Railway Development himself wrote to us that he is fully in support and is ready to take charge of his property, that’s how come we went in. They have given us the assurance that they are going to fence their property so we are counting on their assurance in sustaining such exercise,” he said.



The Assembly, in a notice to the traders in December 2017, said their activities at these unauthorized areas affects vehicular and human traffic, and also contributes seriously to the heaps of garbage found along major roads in the capital.

On Monday, January 8, the Mayor of Accra visited a number of areas including the Central Business District, Kwame Nkrumah interchange, Tip-toe lane among other areas within the metropolis and the exercise has since taken effect.

The AMA indicated that the activities of the traders and hawkers were against the AMA hawkers bye-law of 2011, and section 117(1) of the road traffic regulations, 2012(L.I.2180).

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