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Politics of Thursday, 16 June 2016

Source: Class FM

Why has NDC ditched NPP housing projects? - Dapaah

Ghanaians have been urged to demand from the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, reasons for failing to continue with the affordable housing project began by the former New Patriotic Party (NPP) government under Mr John Kufuor.

The call came from Mrs Cecilia Dapaah, a former Minister of Works and Housing, who spoke on Ghana Yensom on Accra100.5FM Thursday June 16, 2016.

She said the Kufuor government, in its quest to bridge the 1.5 million housing deficit facing Ghanaians at the time, decided to construct 5,200 units of low-cost accommodation across the ten regions of the country under its Affordable Housing Scheme. But she stated that when the NPP handed over power to the NDC government in 2009, the latter began a separate housing scheme – one of which was the Saglemi Housing Project commissioned Tuesday June 14 by President John Mahama – leaving the ones initiated by the previous government to rot or overtaken by squatters.

“If these [the projects the NPP started] still exist and we used taxpayers’ money to undertake such a project and you abandon it to start another one, then what is the rationale behind it? I do not understand it,” she lamented to Chief Jerry Forson, adding that if the NDC had decided to complete what the NPP had started and built additional ones, that would have been in order.

“So, I do not know why they did not do it. Ghanaians must begin to ask them questions to find out what prevented them from completing those units,” the former Bantama MP stated. “I cannot tell which type of policy they hold that they could not continue this nice idea, which is causing financial loss to Ghanaians. I do not understand. That is why I will humbly urge Ghanaians to ask questions why our own money has been used to undertake projects and have subsequently been abandoned.”

She lamented the discontinuation of the affordable housing projects, saying providing decent accommodation for the poor lifted them “immediately from slum level”, improved their health, ensured better sanitation, and offered an ideal environment for children to grow up in.

Further, she expressed doubts if the new housing units commissioned by the president could be afforded by the poor.

Mrs Dapaah denied talk that the NPP sold the first block of completed housing units to their cronies back in 2008. “It is not true. We never sold them”, she said.

She explained that a call was made for applications and as such, allocations were made to those who applied, revealing that less than 200 housing units were allocated to such persons. The Works and Housing Ministry also allocated 200 units to the Ghana Police Service under a concept to house police in communities.

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