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21.03.2007 General News

Workers to benefit from affordable houses

By myjoyonline

Government would ensure that workers benefit from the affordable housing project to help reduce the housing problem facing most workers in the country.

Measures would therefore be put in place to check people from buying and renting out the housing units at high prices beyond the reach of the ordinary workers.

The Minster for Water Resources, Works and Housing, Mr Hackman Owusu-Agyeman disclosed this when he inspected the site for the Koforidua component of the project.

The Koforidua project, which consists of 63 blocks of 4-storey houses containing 2,506 flats, is being constructed on a 100-acre plot.

The Minister said the housing project, which had already began in Kumasi in the Ashanti Region and Kpone in the Greater Accra Region was being funded by the government with HIPC funds.

According to him, the housing projects were self-financing with no charge on the state budget or finances, and that so far it had spent about 350 billion cedis on the projects nationwide.

Mr Owusu-Agyemang said the project have been designed to be convenient in terms of payment and access to amenities such as schools, markets and recreational centres and that the beneficiaries would pay for their houses over a period of 20 years.

The Minister indicated that, the cost of the flats had been fixed at half the price on the private market for the same type of houses and encouraged the Banks to support workers to access the facility under flexible terms of payment.

The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Yaw Barimah said the site was initially earmarked for the construction of a Regional hospital but due to the priority attached to housing by the government, the site had to be given out.

He told the reporters that assessment of people's properties on the land had been done and a compensation of 2.3 billion cedis had been paid at figures acceptable to the property owners who were mainly farmers.