On Tuesday September 15, Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, Dr. Mahamadu Bawumia paid a day’s working visit to the Western Regional capital, Sekondi-Takoradi.
HE Dr. Bawumia started the day by commissioning a $56.7m Liquid Bulk Terminal at the Takoradi Port, where he also the sod for the construction of a new Dry Bulk Jetty Phase Two. The project is meant to increase Ghana’s manganese and bauxite exports and the importation of cement related bulk cargoes, as well as make Ghana the leading destination for dry bulk cargo sector investment in Africa.
The efficiency of the new Bulk Liquid Terminal, which has five loading arms for five products, namely: petrol, diesel, LPG, heavy fuel and bitumen, will help BDC companies to avoid delays, which result in high demurrage cost.
The expansion of facilities at the Takoradi Port underlines government’s commitment to improving maritime transport, which is significant to the growth of our economy.
In his address, Vice President recalled fondly how Ibistek, the contractors of the project approached him as head of the economic management team to present a proposal for the infrastructural investment that would allow the port to receive bulk cargo vessels that require deeper anchoring.
“There is no doubt that maritime transport represents the most important mode of international freight movement. It also goes without saying, that without a resilient infrastructural and efficient port operation, there will be little trade and very little socio-economic benefits to the country. Besides offering the most economic and reliable way to move goods over long distances, our ports provides the platform for revenue mobilization through customs, duties and taxes, and provides employment opportunities to several Ghanaians”, HE Mahamadu Bawumiah said.
He also attended a ceremony to cut the sod for the construction of the first-ever interchange in the Western Region at the PTC roundabout in Takoradi. This brings to six, the number of interchanges the government has started in its first term of office.
The others are; the Tema interchange, which has been completed, the Obetsebi Lamptey, Pokuase, Nungua and Tamale interchanges.
Speaking at the sod-cutting ceremony, Vice President Bawumia said the construction of the interchange, which will enhance free flow of traffic in Takoradi, forms part of government’s broader vision of providing infrastructure for all, as well as government’s specific program to improve road infrastructure in the twin city of Sekondi-Takoradi.
“The construction of the PTC Interchange fits into the Government’s program of improving the road infrastructure of Sekondi-Takoradi and to modernize the twin city,” Dr. Bawumia said.
Dr. Bawumia added that apart from the construction of the PTC interchange, the Akufo-Addo government is also undertaking road improvements within the Sekondi-Takoradi metropolis, such as road network around the Paa Grant roundabout, which is also scheduled to be converted into an interchange, to Effia Nkwanta Hospital.
He noted further that the Accra Road, the Sekondi Road from the Paa Grant Roundabout, as well as the Adiembra Road from Effia Nkwanta Hospital will be widened to dual carriageways.
Western Regional Minister Dr. Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah who doubles as Member of Parliament for Takoradi could not hide his excitement for the commencement of a major infrastructural investment in his constituency. He recalled how he impressed on his colleague member of parliament for Essikado-Ketan and Railway Development Minister, Joe Ghartey to ensure he added the PTC interchange into the NPP manifesto for election 2016, while he was chairman for their manifesto committee. He was certain that the interchange propels the fortunes of the regional capital enormously.
“In fact, this interchange will change the face of Takoradi”, he said.
Dr. Bawumia also inspected ongoing road projects in Kansaworodo, cut the sod for the construction of a market in the same area, as well as inspected the on-going construction of the Effia-Kwesimintsim Municipal Assembly offices in Apremdo.
Earlier in the day, HE the Vice President visited the Western Regional House of Chiefs, where he inaugurated the reconstituted Western Regional House of Chiefs. Following the creation of the Western North Region out of the Western Region.
Addressing the Chiefs after the inauguration, Vice President Bawumia said, despite controversies that the Chieftaincy institution has gone through in some areas, the relevance and contribution of Chieftaincy to the development of the country cannot be underestimated.
“Nananom, the Chieftaincy institution, like various other institutions of state, has lived through controversial periods of our history, playing different
roles at different time.” Dr. Bawumia said.
The Vice President noted that some people often raise criticism about the relevance of chieftaincy, but he maintained that the institution is indispensable.
“I do not hesitate to state that Chieftaincy has, and will be an indispensable part of our history and development. It is so widely respected that even when our fellow Ghanaians leave our shores, and are free of the influence of chieftaincy, they create chiefs wherever they are,” Dr. Bawumia stated.
Vice President Bawumia stressed the the Akufo-Addo’s belief in the Chieftaincy institution as an integral part of the nation’s development process, especially in our democratic dispensation.
He also listed a number of things the Akufo-Addo government has done, since assuming office in 2017, which he said affirms the government’s belief and support of the Chieftaincy institution.
“Government recognises that, in order to ensure the success of the programme of social and economic transformation that was put before the Ghanaian people, we have to do a lot. It is important that we bring the traditional role of our Chiefs into the modern, constitutional set up, under which we govern our country,” Dr. Bawumia emphasized.
He also congratulated the House of Chiefs for the role they play in nation building. He especially commended them for their role in the battle in combating COVID-19.