Residents living in and around Kumasi in the Ashanti region are crying over identity crisis the city is facing currently.
They complained that the garden city which used to be envy of other citizens in other regions in the country for its beautiful ambience is now in a mess.
They blamed authorities of the Kumasi metropolis for allowing the city to be an eye-sore, adding that they look unconcerned whilst the city deteriorates.
Giving aesthetics view of the garden city interview with Madam Claudia Amanianpong, she lamented that, traders have been allowed to turn roads, pavements into to malls and markets.
Madam Amanianpong added that people have been allowed to build anywhere, sachet bags, refuse are thrown into gutters and open spaces where people live and use as by-pass.
Eulogising the once adored city, she the recalled that there was a magnificent fountain at the centre of Kejetia, adding that zoo is no more patronised, revoli cinema where people used to go there to watch movies is now part of Bantama market now.
‘Where are the people who are supposed to develop Kumasi, my hearts bleeds when I walk round towns in Kumasi,’ she bewailed.
‘Look at the market, a place which used to clean is now filled with filth. Kumasi was a planned city, post offices were supposed to built in Suame. When you sit back and wonder, you ask yourself what happened, what went wrong. You wonder why people have been allowed to build anywhere’.
She said railway roads have been dismantled and trucks are now allowed to ply on, institutions and systems worked in those years. ‘We make the rules and we don’t implement them’.
‘People were disciplined back in the days, but now people are not disciplined. Those days you hear or at the sight of officials of town councils and people ran helter- skelter to put things in order to avoid being charged a fine, either by weeding, sweeping and cleaning our environments,’ she said.
‘The railway lines have been dismantled, now trucks walk on roads you are collect tickets everyday what do you do to that, am sure Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) gets over ten thousand Ghana cedis every day’.
‘Markets at Bantama, Asafo, Krofom and other towns should be ready to avoid traders selling on pavements’.
The Former Head of Political Science, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) Dr. Richard Amoako Baah said Kumasi was planned by the colonial masters and when they left Kumasi, everything was left in a chaos.
‘ If you are authority and don’t know that the population will grow so you have to put things in place, then what are you doing,’ he asked.
He said Kumasi doesn’t need appointed Mayor but rather a person who the people can vote and choose to rule them.
‘We had trees everywhere, we should have kept it up, high rise buildings built at the centre of Kejetia, hire a well qualified city manager to manage the city, the moment the population started growing, the politicians didn’t care. When nasty buildings and shops have been built at Kejetia and people don’t get places to walk. There are no empty place in Kumasi, everywhere is congested,’ he emphasised.
‘There are lots of vehicles that are going to Bolga and other parts of the north and pass through Kumasi, which shouldn’t be so; there should be a by-pass to ease the congestion. We need to build four bridges in different locations connecting the Susuansu River at Tech to ease traffic congestion’.
Kojo Dickson said ‘We all share collectively the blame, authorities and citizens are all at fault. Suame roundabout is so much of a pity. Were traders consulted on the race-course and the Kejetia projects,’ he asked.
The Ashanti Regional President of the Ghana Bar Association t, Lawyer Yaw Boafo recalled that ‘we have done things wrongly in this city, in early 70s, due to the revolution everything was centred in Accra. All business men started in Kumasi and later realised that it wasn’t possible to survive in Kumasi so moved to Accra. The leadership left behind in Kumasi couldn’t get the city going’.