After months of agitation, protestation and litigation, the way was cleared Monday for construction work to begin on the Kejetia Terminal Complex in Kumasi.
President John Dramani Mahama and the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, cut the sod to signify the beginning of construction of the four-phase project which will turn the terminal into more than 10,000 shops with modern facilities.
The $298-million facility, which will be completed within 24 months, has facilities such as CCTV systems powered by a solar power generation plant on the roof, modern sewerage and waste management facilities, a water reservation and sewer treatment station, among others.
Other facilities to be provided include a large convenient parking lot, a modern bus terminal, a clinic, a police station, a crèche and some community facilities that will all change the skyline of Kumasi after completion.
Phase One of the project comprises construction work at Kejetia in a period of 24 months at a cost of $198 million, while the remaining $100 million will be expended on the second and third phases, which will focus on the redevelopment of the Kumasi Central Market which has experienced incessant fire outbreaks.
President Mahama, Otumfuo and Kumasi Mayor Kojo Bonsu in Picture at Kejetia project sod cutting
Addressing the traders and some members of the public, President Mahama said the project, when completed, would represent the embodiment of Asanteman and a fulfilment of the desires of the people of Ghana.
He expressed satisfaction that the project, which nearly suffered some setbacks, had set off through the efforts of the Asantehene, who had personally set up a committee to iron out all differences that had cropped up during the relocation of the traders at the demolished terminal.
He expressed regret for the inconveniences caused by the reconstruction and stated that the sacrifices of all those affected would culminate in changing the skyline of Kumasi and improve the way business was done, as well as provide modern facilities.
President Mahama assured the traders that they would be given the first priority of occupying the redeveloped Kejetia Terminal.
Kejetia Project Site
Touching on the financing of the project, he explained that it was being done under the New Public Debt Management Strategy, for which reason an on-lending agreement had been signed with the KMA.
That, he said, meant that the government had taken the loan and lent it to the KMA and that the assembly was expected to establish a debt servicing account into which portions of the proceeds from the revenue would be lodged to defray the loan that was extended to it.
President Mahama expressed the hope that the shops would market the many quality local products and that many others would hit the market as part of the agenda for transformation.
“It is only then that we can, as a people, help determine the future of our country’s economy by buying and consuming what we produce ourselves,” he said.
The President, who returned from France recently, said during his interaction with French President Francois Hollande, he was able to broker some financial support to build infrastructure in the Ashanti Region.
President Mahama shaking hand with Otumfuo Osei Tutu II
The Brazilian Ambassador to Ghana, Ms Irene Vida Gala, commended President Mahama for improving Ghana/Brazil relations in recent times which had been manifested in the increasing number of Brazilian contractors which had made Ghana Brazil’s main construction firm in West Africa.
The Chief Executive of the firm executing the job, Contracta Enginenharia Limited, Mr Fabio Camara, said the project would yield over 1,000 jobs.