Residents of Ashongman Estate in Accra have staged a demonstration to register their protest against the construction of a filling station in the heart of the community.
They marched through the streets of the estates to draw the government’s attention to their concerns.
Dressed in red clothes, they held placards with inscriptions such as “They Want to Kill Us” and “We Don’t Want to Lose Properties.”
The demonstration was also to alert the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other relevant state agencies to the situation.
They also wanted to create awareness of the danger the siting of filling station posed to residential areas.
When the Daily Graphic visited the site, it realised that the yet-to-be-completed filling station was situated within the community, and also shared a wall with the Ebenezer Baptist Church.
The Founder and Overseer of the Ebenezer Baptist Church, Rev. Frank Abbey, called on the EPA to ensure that the station was not sited in the community.
He said siting of the station in the area could pose a threat to life and property.
Rev. Abbey recalled the June 3 flood disaster in 2015, where a filling station caught fire, leading to the death of over 200 people in Accra.
“Although it left many Ghanaians in a traumatic state, the experience has since been forgotten.”
According to Rev. Abbey, even though they had expressed their concerns to the police and the Abokobi District Assembly, there had not been any response, compelling them to embark on the demonstration.
He also claimed that the residents had spoken to the owner of the station about the need for him to relocate but to no avail.
“We went to the assembly and found out that he had a permit that dates back five years ago. The permit has since expired and now that people have settled in the area he is no more entitled to build here,” Rev.Abbey further alleged.
In his response, the owner of the filling station, one Mr Quarcoo, said he had a permit and indicated that the siting of the station would not in anyway endanger the lives of the people.
“I am an engineer by profession and, therefore, will not involve in activities that will endanger the lives of the people, neither would I invest my money in a venture that would not yield dividends,” he stated.
According to him, “even if I want compensation, the people cannot pay me the full amount I have invested so far in the project.”