Business News of 2014-05-22

Proposed biogas project under threat

A portion of an old dump site located on the main Ablekuma-Anyaa Highway that has since 2012 been put under preparation for a biogas project is now being converted into a gas filling station.

The developer is at the moment excavating buried garbage at the Ablekuma-Nsumfa dump site to position his underground gas tanks.

But the General Manager of the Accra Solid and Liquid Waste Management Limited, the company that operated the old dump, Mr Isaac Offeh, has expressed grave concern over the development, which he said had health, safety, and security implications.

He said he had drawn the attention of the Anyaa Police to the development and was calling on the Ga Central Municipal Assembly to halt the illegal project which posed an obvious danger to residents and communters in that part of the city.

Land sale

The piece of land was allegedly sold by Nii Borkorborkor, also known as “Policeman”, who Mr Offeh described as the leader of a group of land guards.

Nii Borkorborkor lives in Ablekuma, near Accra. According to Mr Offeh, he was banned from entering the landfill site at the time it was in use.

The “land guard” is said to have sold that portion of land to someone whose name was given only as Alhaji for the construction of the gas filling station.

Nii Borkorborkor, however, denied selling the land. He said it was the chiefs in the area who sold the property because a promise made to them by the Accra Solid and Liquid Waste Management Limited to construct a health facility for the people as compensation for dumping garbage in their community was not honoured.

According to him, the land did not belong to the Accra Solid and Liquid Waste Management Limited. The company, he said, was only allowed to fill an old pit left behind by quarry activities in the area.

Filling station project ongoing

“The developer is going ahead with works on the site without considering the risk the gas filling station poses to the communities following its very close location to dwelling houses”, Mr Offei stated.

Mr Offeh recounted the recent fire outbreak that occurred at the old Oblogo landfill site where a similar project was being carried out as enough grounds for the authorities to stop the developer from proceeding with the project.

“In that incident, it took officers of the Ghana National Fire Service, a considerable number of days and a hell of battle to put out the fire due to the gaseous matter involved,” he said.

Background

The Accra Solid and Liquid Waste Company Limited partnered the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) to acquire that piece of land at Ablekuma-Nsumfa to be used as a dumping site for garbage collected in the Accra metropolis and its surrounding administrative divisions.

The site was closed in February 2012 when the capacity was exhausted. Since then, it had been professionally capped for the purpose of extracting gas for electric power generation as a value added project.

The Biogas project

The General Manager of Accra Solid and Liquid Waste Management Limited, said already a Swedish company engaged in the production of biogas project had invested heavily in the gas extraction project.

He said pump-tests so far undertaken indicated that the site had significant volumes of gas, the quality of which had been certified to be very rich.

According to him, arrangements were being made to bring in equipment for extraction of gas by the Swedish company for the generation of electricity which was to be the first of such installation in the country.

Mr Offeh said after reporting that matter to the Anyaa Police and the Ga Central Municipal Assembly, a task force from the assembly moved in to stop the developer but they had since remained distant.

The Anyaa Police, however, has directed the waste company to report the matter to the Property Fraud Unit of the Police Service at the Police Headquarters.

“Unfortunately, development continues at the site especially at night”, he stated.