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30.09.2004 General News

Gov't to demolish structures on Railway Corporation's land

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Accra, Sept. 30, GNA - The Government would demolish all structures on Ghana Railway Corporation's (GRC) land that would impede the revamping of the Railways Sub-Sector.

Subsequently all commercial activities within railway stations, especially in Accra, Kumasi and Sekondi and also near railway lines should cease, forthwith.

Professor Christopher Ameyaw-Akumfi, Minister of Railways and Harbours, announced this on Thursday when he received the Report of the Committee set up in July 2003 to look into the illegal occupation of lands belonging to the Ghana Railway Corporation.

He said the Government was not going to compromise on any situation that would impede smooth negotiation with investors in its quest to revamp the Sub-Sector to international standards. He said the Report would soon be placed before Cabinet for advice.

Presenting a summary of the Report, Mrs Ama Jantuah-Banful, Chairperson of the 12-member Committee, said it was imperative that some of the structures were demolished, especially those that did not conform to the planned schemes of the various railway stations.

She said the committee identified various categories of encroachers on the railway lands - private individuals who might have acquired the land legally; illegal occupants and lands given to staff of the Railway Company.

Mrs Jantuah-Banful said all property that would not affect the restructuring process should be allowed to stand but a penalty should be imposed on the owners.

She said property belonging to staff of the Company should be given to them but upon their death, the property should become the asset of the Company.

Government is currently at the stage of constituting a committee to negotiate terms with two major investors, Spoornet from South Africa and Railnet from the United Kingdom to revamp the Sector.