Former Minister of Trade and Industry, Ekwow Spio-Garbrah has disclosed that he is not to blame for the current state of the defunct Komenda Sugar Processing Factory which was functional under the previous administration.
He told Ghanaweb’s Kyenkyenhene Boateng that the factory under his watch worked for only three months because of lack of regular supply of raw materials but maintained it actually produced sugar contrary to claims by the then opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) it never produced a particle of sugar.
According to him, the erstwhile National Democratic Congress (NDC) handed to the new administration a state-of-the-art sugar processing factory worth $35millon which was a loan from the Indian government; discounting claims the factory was never completed and put to use before his party exited power.
“There was not a particular timeline… nobody had been promised a timeline. When I took over the sod had been cut for the construction of a sugar processing factory. The factory had been built three-months before schedule by the Indian contractors. It was not a campaign promise and it was not in our manifesto. No, timeline was not given”, he responded to a question as to whether the factory was even completed and on time.
“The sugar is in the ground now. The factory is not working but it is not the NDC government which is in power now. That question you are asking is a very question to be asked the incumbent government.
Because we handed to them a completed sugarcane sugar factory worth about $35 million based on the loan from the Indian government. Their job was to make sure the sugar factory works”, he stressed when asked if it ever produced sugar and if it still does today.
The NDC flagbearer hopeful revealed that the factory had latest machines expressing hope that the new administration is taking care of the equipment in order to ensure they do not become obsolete.
“When we were in government it worked so they should also make it work because I am no longer in government”, he challenged the NPP accusing them of gaining notoriety in collapsing projects they inherit from other administrations.
“Generally they have a problem with what they inherit from another government. If you go back to the Nkrumah era where Nkrumah left them almost 300 state-owned enterprises they consciously allowed many of these factories to collapse,” he added.