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16.04.2008 Regional News

Accra residents worried about AMA apathy

By Michael Addo - Ghanaian Chronicle

For some of years now, the question that some people
ask, is whether the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA), through it activities, has been able to deliver as expected, as far as re-structuring of the capital city, Accra, is concerned.

On this basis, the Accra File went round the city of Accra to find out from the people their perceptions of the Assembly and its activities.

It was gathered that though the Assembly, through its innovations, has done its best, some people said, “there was still more to be done.”

According to them, the positioning and the structuring of the capital city, has not been remarkable, and was something not good enough to write home about.

They argued that the capital city should be well-structured and labelled for the easy identification of places and towns, but in Accra everything seems to be in shambles. They complained that people build anyhow and anywhere, regardless of the implications. This they noted has been a contributing factor to floods in some parts of the city, and the easy transmission of contagious diseases, such as cholera, flu, measles and cough.

“They build under electricity high tension poles, near to rivers, gutters and streets and at waterlogged and unapproved areas,” they said.

They further disclosed that some people have cultivated a motto of “never give small land a chance,” and as a result the people have resulted to building at any place, no matter the size of the land. These people were so much concerned about the younger generation, because they have started picking the negative habits of the elderly ones.

The situation at Avenor, another suburb, was the same. Some young boys had built a block-making factory near to a high tension electricity pylon pole. They gave the excuse that due to the high cost of renting a house these days, which they cannot afford, and would rather risk making use of the small lands available, no matter the location.

This, they said, had become the order of the day. When quizzed about the actions of the AMA, they chuckled but stated, “They are not to be taken serious.”

Mr. Andrew Botwey, a teacher at the Accra Newtown Experimental School, in another suburb of Accra, narrated to the paper that the AMA, in its efforts, comes to put a prohibitory order on some buildings, instructing the owners to demarcate or stop an on-going project.

“The assembly refuses to follow up to verify if their orders had been complied with,” he said.

They continue with their project knowing that the Assembly would not follow up, and that the prohibitory orders, are only to give a semblance of them doing their job.

The teacher disclosed that people have now realized the apathy of the Assembly, and therefore have made it a habit to build anywhere, and even build to completion, ignoring the assembly.
“Some have resulted to erasing the orders with paints and mortar,” he said lamented.

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