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Opinions of Friday, 3 July 2009

Columnist: Asamoah, Kwasi

The Price of Cement and Flooding in Accra

By Kwasi Asamoah, Phd.

The government of Ghana should do something about the price of cement to assist in cutting down the perennial flooding of Accra. Why am I saying this? If the price of cement comes down, it will enable Ghanaians to build decent houses at affordable prices and also use some to cement all pavements in our cities, towns, and villages. The ordinary Ghanaian needs to be able to afford to build a house for himself and not make it the preserve of the rich and Ghanaians in the Diaspora. It will make our cities, towns and villages aesthetically beautiful. Why should African towns and villages look so backward compared to the rest of the world?

If the price of cement comes down, we will be able to cement all the pavements in our cities as is found in cities of the developed countries. If we are able to cover up the dust in the cities, silt will not flow into the drains and block them to cause flooding. Secondly, the dust bowl in our cities will drastically reduce. The government needs to stop the monopoly of cement production and allow more companies to produce cement in the country to bring down its price. Not only should we cement the pavements, but we should also encourage landlords to plant grass and other plants on all open spaces around their properties to reduce soil erosion when it rains.

Our politicians have to stop taking kickbacks and stop the monopoly of the provision of services to make life for the ordinary Ghanaians worthy and bearable – remember the fishy deal of GACHEM where bribes were paid to government officials to allow them sole monopoly of cement production in the country? Why can't Ghanaians be allowed to import Cement if our local production level is low? As a short term solution, this will increase its supply and lower its price to make it affordable by the ordinary Ghanaian. Source: Kwasi Asamoah, Phd.