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Opinions of Friday, 29 March 2013

Columnist: Agbo, Willie Roy

The Oil City- Takoradi

The development of Ghana is paramount to every Ghanaian. It will be prudent for all of us to make input to areas where majority of Ghanaian will benefit .One area of concern is the road network. Good road facilitates economic development, good health and reduces man-hours

This notion propels me to read through the president’s sectional address on road network.

After reading, I team my observation THE OIL CITY –Takoradi. Since the discovery of oil in the region, it has further open the region to a lot of activities. To start with, Obuasi Ghana’s gold hap but one of the underdeveloped areas in the country compared to its endowments.

The road from Kumasi to obuasi is among one of the bad roads in the country taking into account the number of vehicles that ply that route. It did not start recently but I learnt it has been so for ages.

Comparing obuasi to Johannesburg is something I would not like to do even though they all serve the same purpose.

Having all these in mind it would be wise to pick some lessons from Obuasi issue to avert the some problem in the oil city.

Considering the oil city:

(a) The road networks to the place (b) The distance from other areas to the place and (c) Economic activities around the place.

Even though there is a good road from Accra through cape coast to the oil city and also from Kumasi through Assin Fosu through cape coast to the oil city , one of the best routes from the northern sector is through Kumasi – obuasi – Dunkwa on offin –Bogoso-Tarkwa to the oil city as compared to Assin Fosu through cape coast.

Why do I say so, to reduce the pressure that will be on the cape cost side of the road and also that explains my points (b) and (c) above? It is the shortest distant from Kumasi to the oil city as it will also open the economic activities to other towns on the route which passes through three political regions. (Ashanti, Central and western)

It will also facilitate transportation of cocoa which is the major cash crop cultivated at that part of the country, minerals and timber to the oil city harbour. It will be one of the plus to the president John Dramani Mahama lead administration if this road is considered in their first term since it will give face lift to Obuasi and Dunkwa on Offin ,Wassa Akropong, Bogoso and Tarkwa. To those around that route KUMASI is their capital. Means they get everything from Kumasi. It will also open other link roads to areas like Diaso, Sefwi Bekwai Asankragua etc.

I now understand why the first president of Ghana, Dr Kwame Nkrumah constructed the rail line from Kumasi through those towns to Takoradi. We are celebrating the man but destroying his legacies, are we going or coming? Since the rail network is malfunctioning and the road is also not in good shape, it is heavily affecting means of transportation in the area.

Railway is capital intensive compared to road, in short term, government attention to that stretch of road will serve a great purpose.

Willie Roy Agbo