A former Deputy Communication Minister, Mr Felix Kwakye Ofosu has said the $57-million Tema Motorway Interchange that was opened by President Nana Akufo-Addo on Friday, 5 June 2020, is the “brainchild” and “handiwork” of Mr John Mahama’s administration.
While opening the Phase 1 of the edifice, President Akufo-Addo described claims by the Mahama administration that it undertook unprecedented infrastructural development, including roads, as a mere fantasy that was contained in the Green Book of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
“We made a pledge to the Ghanaian people to expand and improve the road network while closing the missing links in the network. We had to make this pledge because we know that the so-called unprecedented infrastructure development of the Mahama administration was fantasy; existing in the Green Book and not on the ground,” President Akufo-Addo said when he inaugurated the $57-million Tema Motorway Interchange project that is being financed by the government of Japan through the Japanese International Cooperation Agreement (JICA).
“We know that the provision of quality road infrastructure is an important tool for the socio-economic development of our country and government will ensure the even spread of such projects across the country”, the President said, adding: “That is why we are determined to complete major road projects like the Pokuase Interchange, the Eastern Corridor Roads, the Bolgatanga-Pulimakum road, the Tamale Interchange, the Tema-Bomaa road, Obuasi town roads, the Atebubu-Kwame Danso road, the Twifo Praso-Assin Fosu road, LEKMA road, Suhum-Asamankese road …”
“The government has secured funding for them and virtually all of them are going to be completed before the end of this year”, the President added.
Responding to the President at a press conference organised by the NDC, Mr Kwakye Ofosu said: “As far as roads are concerned, and seeing as the President’s latest false claims about the Green Book were made at the commissioning of the Tema Motorway Interchange Project, which he has sought to appropriate in terms of conception, it is necessary at this stage to put to rest the needless debate about whose brainchild it was and who did the heavy lifting required to ensure its execution”.
The Minority in Parliament last week, Mr Kwakye Ofosu said, “set the records straight, but just so that anyone out there who is not yet aware of the facts surrounding the project is left in no doubt, I wish to reiterate this, also in the hope it jolts President Akufo-Addo and his government into reality about the true state of affairs”.
“The Tema Motorway Interchange Project was funded by a Japanese grant of $57 million applied for in 2013 by the Mahama administration”, he said.
He added: “The survey for the development of the project and the tender process began at the behest of the Japanese government through JICA in March 2015.”
“The survey and design were completed in December 2016 and a detailed report presented in February 2017 when the Akufo-Addo government was barely a month old”, Mr Kwakye Ofosu noted.
“The only contribution of the Akufo-Addo government was to go through the mere formality of signing the grant agreement with JICA after work had already been done prior to their assumption of power. The rest was to go through the motions and respect the agreements so signed”.
“It is beyond debate, therefore, that for all intents and purposes, the Tema Motorway Interchange is the brainchild and handiwork of President John Dramani Mahama”.
“It is regrettable that when commissioning the Tema Motorway Interchange, the zero-sum-game brand of politics practised by President Akufo-Addo, which emphasizes polarization instead of cohesion, caused him to depart from the noble tradition set by the venerable President John Evans Atta Mills and followed through by President John Dramani Mahama which saw them invite President John Agyekum Kufuor to the commissioning of the N1 project and the Bui Dam which he found money for”.
“While in office, President Mahama demonstrated his capacity to execute such major road projects by starting and completing both the Kwame Nkrumah Interchange and the Kasoa Interchange projects, respectively. He gave life to his vision to further modernise the road network across the country by securing funding for a number of other major interchange projects. In November 2016, President Mahama secured $39.2 million and $84 million for the Obetsebi Lamptey and Pokuase Interchanges, respectively”.
“If you happen to pass by the former Obetsebi Lamptey Circle or the Pokuase road and find interchanges coming up, please note that those projects have been made possible because President John Dramani Mahama found money for them and they are his initiative”.
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