A student union in Zebilla in the Bawku West District of the Upper East Region has appealed to the government to take steps to ensure that the contractor working on the Bolgatanga- Bawku-Pulmakom road resumes construction work.
According to the Toende Students’ Union, the contractor, Queiroz Galvao, has since November 2017 abandoned the project site and laid of a number of workers due to government’s indebtedness.
Contract for the about 110km long highway was awarded in 2016 by the John Mahama-led government. A 13km portion of it – Bolga to the Red Volta – was awarded to MAWUMS construction limited.
The road is an international highway that links the Northern sector of Ghana to its neighbouring ECOWAS countries.
Only 40km of the road has so far been completed and the Union say their checks and visit to the project site revealed all machinery for the work has been parked at the contractor’s yard at Binguri.
Again, it claimed sources at the construction firm said the contractor would abandon the project completely if the government fails to take action by the end of January.
At a news conference to appeal to government to get the contractor to resume work on the project, the Union said the current poor state of the road has resulted in health hazards, accidents and increased cases of armed robbery among others.
“The rough nature of the road makes the whole atmosphere dusty when vehicles pass by and this makes travellers and residents along the road prone to infections and other health complicated issues,” the Union said.
It indicated that armed robbers have taken advantage of the poor nature of the road to attack travellers, especially at sections where vehicles are forced to slow down due to potholes.
“Emergency cases in hospitals or clinics referred from towns and communities that use the road to the regional hospital may get complicated due to the potty nature of the road,” they added.
Beyond that, the Union observed about 500 people within the Kausaug kingdom are now jobless because of the suspension of construction work.
“Precious lives are lost, our health as we travel back to school is at risk, travellers are scared and economic activities have slowed down, vehicles break down every hour travellers spend several hours on a journey that is supposed to be just an hour,” it indicated.
The Union has meanwhile appealed to the government to take the necessary action to ensure the contractor resumes work on the project, which is expected to complete in 2019.
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