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10.03.2009 Regional News

VOLTA CONTRACTORS ASK FOR INCLUSION IN GOVERNMENT PROJECTS.

By ELORM BIMPEH

As part of election of its new Chairman, the Association of Building and Civil Contractors of Ghana (ABCCG), Volta Region has implored government to include them in the nation's projects, especially the ones that will be embarked on in Volta so as to cut down on under-development which has shelved down the region in decades. This was put across during their 1st Regional Meeting for 2009 held at Woezor Hotel Banquet Hall in Ho on Thursday, March 5. The meeting saw in attendance about 50 participants (contractors) hailing from Ho, Hohoe, Sokode, Adaklu, Tsito among other towns in the Region.

Mr. Timothy Awuku Fiattor, CEO of the Ho-based construction firm DEFIAT Development Company; past National Treasurer of ABCCG; a Member of the Executive Committee of ABCCG and the Chairman of ABCCG Volta in his address has commended his colleague contractors in the Region for their tireless and tremendous efforts reaching grounds running after the previous government for projects to be run in Volta, which in turn did yield unpleasant results, anyway. He urged them to keep the same spirit alive to fight their course at all times and never give up even when troubles befall them. He frantically blamed the past government for turning deaf ears to the call of contractors in the Region whose request for jobs were turned down but rather turned round awarding projects to contractors from other regions and even outside the country's boarders. “This has greatly caused and is still causing under-development in our region Volta because, most of the contractors have abandoned the jobs, left then unattended to or half complete”, he alleged. Further, he will be in “great monitoring” with the new government per developmental projects it bids to undertake in Volta. He cited a typical example where he was trying all efforts to secure some project for against the Ghana @ 50 celebrations in 2007 with the former Volta Regional Minister, Mr. Kofi Dzamesi. He had approached the Minister about the said project and called on him one morning to seal the deal for work to begin only for him to be stopped by his guards at the Residency in Ho that he would not be allowed entry in the Minister's premises unless the Minister himself endorses him entry through a phone call, he narrated. He then called the Minister on phone upon the instruction of his men but for several times that he called the Minister's phone, no one picked up. “I drove away after several failed attempts to reach him on phone”. It was on the following day that I found out that the project has been given to some contractors, outside the Region, he cried. He says, situations typical of this he would advise the current government not to portray otherwise, the awful side of the government will be exposed and he hopes that nothing of such nature will crop up, now that he is putting it across.


He bemoaned the government in power to work with the contractors they have in the country and learn to desist from using foreign contractors and use the local ones instead because even the local ones have more expertise than the foreign contractors but it was rather unfortunate they lack the necessary logistics hence they have the sense of belongingness attached to jobs given them in the country. Mr. Awuku Fiattor however advised government to initiate upgrade seminars or courses for the nation's contractors to improve their “know-how”. He also appealed to government to boost the mobilization funds of contracts awarded so that jobs can be finished in time effectively.

The election of a new Chairman saw Mr. Prosper Ledi, CEO of PROKO Ghana Ltd, based in Ho taking up the mantle from Mr. Timothy Awuku Fiattor. Mr. Ledi, the Chairman-elect in his keynote address to the 50 contractors said that, largely congratulated his predecessors for their rather tremendous efforts to helping the Association. He said, despite their strong but failed attempts in securing jobs for members, he will tirelessly propose similar ideologies and forward them to government for the necessary address now that he has been elected into office as the Chairman of ABCCG.

He proposed that a bank be set up to amass funds to assists small, up-coming and weak building firms in their projects should the need arise. He advised his fellow colleagues to desist from lavishing money on luxury goods and support the association with funds to organize in-service training and workshop seminars for members so that they can compete with their foreign counterparts. He also urged them to eschew apathy, selfishness and stop playing the “blame game”. He finally commends Prof. Mills on his election as President of Ghana and petitioned him to equally include the Volta Region in his government's developmental plans, unlike his Association was thrown overboard by the previous government.


Story by:
ELORM BIMPEH,
HO – VOLTA REGION.

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