Members of the Ningo-Prampram Youth for Development last week demonstrated over the bad nature of the road, particularly the Dawhenya-Afienya road – which has been left unattended over the past 25 years.
The youth, numbering over hundred clad in red shirts and red bands, took over the Dawhenya-Afienya junction with burning tyres and other roadblocks, preventing vehicles – especially heavy-duty trucks – from using the road.
On their placards were inscriptions such as ‘dust is killing our people’; ‘our people are dying’; ‘no road, no vote’; and ‘no road, no campaign’, among others.
The youth described the poor nature of the 7.2 kilometre road stretch as the result of total neglect by government, and have given government a 14-day ultimatum to bring the contractor back to site to fix the road or they will advise themselves.
John Charway, President of the Ningo-Prampram Youth for Development, said the frequent generation of dust coupled with the total disrespect to lives and property by various heavy-duty trucks that use the Dawhenya-Afienya road is endangering the lives of their people along the stretch.
The situation is causing great life-loss, frequent wear and tear of vehicles, collapsing of various small and medium scale companies in the area and hence huge loss of employment, increase in various forms of crime in the area and on the stretch, and poor security.
Furthermore, Mr. Charway pointed out that activities on the road are becoming a major source of pollution, thereby leading to health complications to both residents and commuters. According to him, the road was already awarded to a contractor who is still on the site; but they were reliably informed that the contractor stopped work due to nonpayment.
“We are therefore calling on government as a matter of urgency to release the needed funds for the contractor to help him expedite action on construction of the roads. We also call on government to release all requisite funds to the contractor to enable him compensate the people who suffered demolition of structures along the stretch at the request of the contractor to construct a dual carriageway,” he said.
The demonstrators also called on all relevant state institutions and the security services to – with immediate effect – suspend the heavy-duty trucks from using the road till it is well constructed. He noted that moving forward they want to be involved in discussions about the road in order to inform their aggrieved constituents.
Mr. Charway, on behalf of the aggrieved youth, presented a petition to the District Chief Executive of the Ningo-Prampram District, Nathaniel Papa Nii Doku, for presentation to the sector-minister.
Mr. Doku therefore called on the youth to exercise restraint because the road is a major one in the district that needs government intervention; however, the assembly does not have the financial strength to fix it.
The B&FT also gathered that about 25 quarry companies are operating in the district and surrounding areas. As a result, Bismarck Rajah – a concerned youth, told the B&FT that if government could deliberate with these quarry companies, they might be in a position to assist government in constructing the road.
According to him, these companies – which include Eastern Quarries, Green Stone, Debey, Platinum, Zina, HDS, Len, and Twins Rocks – could come on board to assist government in repairing the damaged road.