Dr Apaak Drags Minister to Parliament over Bad Roads in Builsa South

 

The Member of Parliament(MP) for Builsa South, Hon. Dr. Clement Apaak has  dragged Minister for Roads and Highways to parliament over abandoned roads projects works in the Builsa South Constituency.

According to the MP, construction works on some communities including Sandema- Wiesi and Sandema- Doninga-Santijan roads which were awarded for construction and were at various level of completion before the 2016 elections have all been stalled, making the roads inaccessible  to commuters.

In effort to alleviate  the plight of the commuters, Hon Apaak posed three questions to the Minister for Roads and Highways, Hon Kwesi Amoako-Atta on the floor of parliament last friday,November 24, 2017.

“Mr Speaker, I rise to ask the Minister for Roads and Highways when the construction of the Sandema to Wiesi road as well as Sandema to Doninga to Santijan will be completed.?”he asked.

Additionally  he asked, “Mr Speaker, I rise to ask the Minister for Roads and Hoghways when the construction of the following roads will start, Fumbisi to Kanjaga section of the Gbedema, Fumbisi, Kanjaga road and Fumbisi to Uwasi road.”

In response to the questions, Hon. Amoako-Atta said “Mr. Speaker, I will be dealing with a background starting with Fumbisi Kanjaga feeder road. Fumbisi Kanjaga road is captured in the department of feeder roads database as Gbedema, Kanjaga, Fumbisi feeder road. It is 17.4km gravel surface road located in the Builsa south district of the Upper East Region. It is an engineered feeder road with a fair to a poor surface condition.”

According to the Minister, “the entire 17.4km road was awarded for rehabilitation on 6th February 2015. Work commenced on 13th may, 2015 and was expected to be completed by 12th November the following year (2016)”. Adding that “the contractual completion period has since elapsed. The progress of work as at 30th September 2017 is projected at 60%.”

“Work done includes, clearing of vegetation, formation, construction of 400m trapezoidal Drain , 572m2 of Stone-pitching, construction of 9no, culverts  of various size and filling of culverts approaches,” the Minister noted.

On the Sandema to Wiesi and the  Sandema to Doninga to Santijan roads, Mr Amoako-Atta said, the Sandema – Wiesi road is a 56km long with both bituminous and gravel surfaces.

He said,two Contracts were awarded for the upgrading of the Sandema – Wiaga road km (1.0-11.0) and Upgrading of Chuchuliga – Sandema – Wiesi road (40km) to cover the entire length of the Chuchuliga – Sandema – Fumbisi road.

The sector Minister told parliament that, “The two road projects when completed will have a bituminous surface. a. Upgrading of the Sandema – Wiaga road km (1.0-11.0) . This project commenced on 16th January, 2013 for completion by 31st December, 2015. The project completion date has since elapsed. The progress of work is projected at 25% physical completion.”

The Contractor, Mr Amoako-Atta stated, has been warned twice to expedite action to complete the works or risk termination.

He said, the project is being financed from the Ghana Road Fund and for the  upgrading of  of 40km Chuchuliga – Sandema – Wiesi road which commenced on 5th September, 2016 for completion on 17th February, 2019.

So far, the Minister said, progress of work is projected at 13% physical completion. This project ends at 3.0km after Fumbisi town towards Wiesi, while the remaining 16km to Wiesi is currently under routine maintenance programme (grading) to keep the road motorable and is also being  financed from the Ghana Road Fund.

With regards to the 30.5km Sandema – Doninga – Santijan road which  ends at the Sissili River, the Minister said, in most of the time, Santijan could not be assessed from Doninga due to absence of a bridge on the Sissili River.

However, the Ministry  he said has a programme with DANIDA to construct six (6) Bridges in the Upper East and Upper West Regions and one of which is to be constructed on the Sissili River.

“Procurement for the construction of the bridges is on-going. Current Programme Two Contracts have been awarded for the Rehabilitation of Sandema – Doninga – Santijan Road 15km and Rehabilitation of Sandema – Doninga – Santijan Road 15 km to 30.5km  to cover the entire length of the Sandema – Doninga – Santijan road to the Sissili River.”

“The two projects when completed will have a gravel surface and bituminous surfacing in the towns along the road. a. Rehabilitation of Sandema – Doninga – Santijan Road 15 km. This project commenced on 3rd November, 2016 for completion on 2nd May, 2018. Physical progress is projected at 5% completion,” the Minister stated.

He added, “the Contractor is currently piling gravel material to use for the sub-base works. The project is being financed from the Ghana Road Fund. b. Rehabilitation of Sandema – Doninga – Santijan Road 30.5km.”

“This project commenced on 3rd November, 2016 for completion on 2nd May, 2018. Physical progress is projected at 2% completion. The Contractor is currently not at site. The project is being financed from the Ghana Road Fund. The project has been recommended for termination and re- award.”

But this explaination did not go down well with the MP for the area, Hon. Dr Apaak on the grounds that the minister’s references to the two roads in question as ‘fair to poor’ service condition was not accurate.

In his view as a member of parliament for the constituency, he was more familiar with the true condition of the roads  and that he could, “state emphatically that the roads are not fair, they are in poor conditions.”

Giving the deplorable condition,  he urged that the minister consider some immediate remedial measures to ensure that the roads are motorable while  waiting  to see to the completion of the roads as captured in the contract awarded to the various contractors.

The Minister in a defense of his earlier position indicated the roads are not that poor as alluded by the MP for the area, adding that one, however, needed a technical eye to determine which part of the roads are fair and which ones are poor.

In his  rebuttal Mr Amoako-Atta said, “Mr. Speaker, I appreciate my colleagues’ equal appreciation of the road, but I want to maintain that in giving the condition mix of any particular road, it could either be good, fair, or poor. And particularly between fair and poor, it could be a thin line and you need to have a technical eye to determine which is fair and which is poor. I want to assure you that it’s not all poor, part of it is fair.”

He further  explained  that “the contractor has been served with two warning letters to expedite action or face termination of the contract. However, the contractor is citing excessive rainfall and employer undue delay in paying for work done as the cause for the slow pace of work.”

With regards to the second question concerning the Fumbisi to Uwasi road, the Minister said “Mr. Speaker, the Fumbisi, Uwasi feeder road is a 10km gravel surface road, with fair to poor surface condition. It is located in the Builsa south district of the Upper East Region. The current program is that this feeder was severely affected by floods during the 2015/2016 rainfall season.”

 

 

 

Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/Felix Engsalige Nyaaba

The Republic News Online

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