It is my pleasure to join you this morning to commission the Asafo Market – UTC Roundabout Interchange Project. This project should have been completed and delivered by the end of July, 2005. It run into several difficulties, putting road users to great discomfort and frustration.
I believe that very useful lessons have been learnt by all of us; consultants, contractor, the supervising agency and even government, which should guide us in the future planning, design and execution of similar projects.
I wish to commend the people of Kumasi, and in particular the motoring public, for their patience and tolerance in the face of the inconveniences they suffered during the implementation of the project.
Ladies and gentlemen, a very important part of this project is the modern footbridge over the railway which is to enhance the movement of human traffic between Roman Hill and Adum.
I have directed the Ministry of Transportation to ensure that the contractors complete this foot bridge, latest by the end of January, 2008.
I wish to take this opportunity to express the nation's appreciation to the World Bank for co-financing with the Government of Ghana the implementation of this project. Indeed, the Bank has over the years been a credible partner and supportive of the programmes of Government.
Ladies and gentlemen, between 2004 and now, I have cut the sod for the commencement of three major road development projects in Kumasi. These projects have all been designed to facilitate the smooth movement of persons, goods and services on the arterial road network in Kumasi to enhance socio-economic development. These are:
The Asafo Market – UTC Roundabout Interchange which we are commissioning today.
The Sokoban Resettlement component of the Oforikrom – Asokwa road and the Lake road project.
Rehabilitation (dualisation) of the Komfo Anokye Hospital – Abuakwa road.
I am happy to say that these projects are progressing steadily.
The Resettlement Project for the wood workers currently located at Anloga is expected to be completed for them to be relocated at Sokoban by March, 2008.
Procurements for the reconstruction of the Oforikrom – Asokwa road and about three kilometres of the Lake Road including an interchange at Asokwa Police Station are on-going; work is scheduled to commence by February 2008.
Messrs China Geo Engineering Construction Limited, which is working on the rehabilitation of the Komfo Anokye Hospital – Abuakwa Road is mobilizing to start work.
Another project that will further enhance the free movement of pedestrians and vehicular traffic is the Urban Transport Project which I launched in September this year.
This project is being funded jointly by the Ghana Government, the World Bank, Agence Francaise de Development (AFD) and the Global Environment Fund (GEF).
Ladies and Gentlemen, Kumasi should be happy for all the developments going on to help it to regain its former glory as Ghana's Garden City. Sadly however, lately, there have been a number of road accidents resulting in fatalities on sections of the newly completed Kumasi-Konongo Odumase road.
I wish to convey my sympathies to the bereaved families, those who have been injured and others who lost property.
The good condition of the road should not be the excuse to drive beyond permitted speed limits. Indeed, all motorists and other road users should be careful in order to avoid accidents.
Let me once again convey the nation's appreciation to the World Bank for the financial support provided for the construction of the project being commissioned.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is now my pleasure to cut the tape to commission the Asafo Market – UTC Roundabout Interchange.
Thank you and may God bless us all.