General News Tue, 20 May 2003

Railways to undergo facelift - Minister

Professor Christopher Ameyaw-Akumfi, Minister of Ports, Harbours and Railways on Monday said the Ghana Railway Corporation would undergo some major changes to enable it deliver better services.

He said plans were far advanced to revamp the railways and fix the trains with new coaches as well as replacing the level crossing bars, flags and barriers that most of the crossings lacked.

Professor Ameyaw-Akumfi said this when he visited the Ghana Railway Corporation to familiarize himself with their activities and have a first hand understanding of their problems.

The areas he visited included the Accra Brewery, Circle, Avenor, Alajo, Achimota and Dome crossings, all suburbs of Accra, and most of which had been out of use.

One major problem the Minister observed was the amount of filth around the crossings being used as dumping grounds by chop bars, fitters, drinking bars and squatters, among others.

Professor Ameyaw-Akumfi said the Ministry would work in collaboration with the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) and the Ministry of Modernisation of the City to find a solution to the problem.

He said the city had not been properly planned and this had resulted in poor drainage and sewage disposal coupled with the indiscipline by commuters.

Mr Edmond Opoku, Acting Manager of Ghana Railway Corporation who took the Minister round said the problem facing the corporation included inadequate safety mechanisms and buildings for the crossing keepers, especially the one at Dome.

The Crossing Keeper at Avenor, Mr. Peter Ntoni, said the indiscipline by drivers make their work difficult, as they do not respect signs at the barriers.

Source: gna