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31.08.2004 General News

Road contractors to be paid arrears soon - Aliu assures

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Mampong (Ash) Aug. 31, GNA - Arrangements have been finalised for the Government to pay arrears owed to road contractors in the next few weeks, Vice President Aliu Mahama, announced at Mampong in the Sekyere West District of the Ashanti Region on Tuesday.

Addressing a grand durbar held in his honour at Mampong to kick-start his one-week tour of the Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo regions, the Vice President expressed the hope that the release of funds would facilitate the completion of road projects underway. The Government, he said, was committed to improving road infrastructure in rural areas to link them up with urban centres, while those in the towns would also be upgraded to ensure easier movement of goods and people.

"When our road networks improve it would create opportunities for vibrant socio-economic activities, which would greatly reduce poverty," Vice President Mahama said.

He assured the people of Mampong that the Government would consider their request that work on roads in the township should be re-awarded to a more competent contractor as the Edmark Company engaged to undertake the three-billion cedi project had failed to accomplish the work.

Vice President Mahama tasked district chief executives to hold consultations with chiefs, assembly members and other stakeholders at the grassroots level to identify their real needs before initiating development projects.

"The Finance Minister recently announced that two billion cedis would be given to every district assembly and I urge all district chief executives to use the funds in providing the felt needs of the people and not to sit at their district capitals and impose projects on them," This, the Vice President said, would make governance more action and result-oriented and also avoid the situation whereby projects are not utilised after completion.

He said: "As I move round the nation, I see projects such as markets that have not been used apparently because the people do not consider it important."

Vice President Mahama said the Kufuor Administration, believed in working closely with the people who gave it the Government the mandate to serve them that is why it had embarked on series of outreach programmes since it assumed office.

To ensure the success of the programmes, the Vice President said ministers of state, technical staff and experts accompanied him on his tour to listen to concerns of the people at first hand so that they could speedily solve their problems.

Professor Chris Ameyaw-Ekumfi, Minister of Ports, Harbours and Railways, Mr Akwasi Osei-Agyei, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ashanti Regional Minister S.K. Boafo, Mr Abubakari Boniface Siddique, Deputy Minister of Tourism and the Modernisation of the Capital City and other public officials accompanied the Vice President.

Vice President Mahama addressed similar durbars at Kwamang, Nsuta and Beposo, all in the Sekyere West District, and assured the chiefs and people that the Government would continue to execute projects that would increase access to education, health, sanitary facilities and also to modernise agriculture towards poverty reduction and the creation of wealth.

The chiefs in the respective towns commended the Government for a good job done so far and appealed for more social amenities to improve their lot.

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