"SO FAR, SO VERY GOOD' LIES ABOUT TRANSPORTATION!
Establishment of Container Berths
THE NPP claims to have established container berths through various actions. However, the 'Ghana Palaver' discovered that the container berths project is only a component of the NDC's 'Ports Expansion and Dredging Programme' undertaken by Messrs Boscalls between 1999-2000 to enable bigger and modern vessels to use the port. The provision of container berths is a natural consequence of the project for which credit is not really due an incoming Government. As for the inland port at Boankra on which the NPP claims work is progressing, 'Ghana Palaver' found out that it is a re-christening of the NDC's 'Fumesua Inland Port Programme'. The Fumesua project ran into land litigation problems and relocation became inevitable. Railways Virtually everything written about the railways in the NPP's "Book of Achievements" is at the level of theory. Roads "So Far, So Very Good" claims credit for the NPP for road maintenance and expansion works that they know next to nothing about. The following is the true story about roads as discovered by 'Ghana Palaver'.
What the NDC left behind
The NDC Government mobilised resources to prosecute a Road Sector Development Project (RSDP) to be undertaken between 2001-2004 at a total cost of $1.1 billion. The Project had the objective of achieving improvements in the supply and performance of road transport services in a regionally equitable manner and involved routine maintenance and construction and reconstruction.
13 donor organisations committed themselves to supporting the programme over the 4-year period and the following resources were mobilised and handed over to the incoming NPP administration.
Road Sector Development Project 2001-2004: Mobilised Resources 2000 Donor/Source Project Amount
1. IDA Not Specific US$220 million
2. OPEC Fund Bunso-Anyinam US$7 million
3. BADEA Bunso-Anyinam US$8.9 million
4. African Devp. Bank Tetteh Quarshie-Mamfe +
Interchange UA 25 million
5. AFDB Roads/Bridges-UW/UE EU10.895 million
6. AFDB Dzodze-Noefe UA12.68 million
6. ECOWAS Fund Akatsi-Aflao UA4.802 million
7. KFW Sogakope-Akatsi UA12.782 million
8. Japanese Loan Accra-Yamoransa US$78 million
9. Japanese Loan Achimota-Apedwa US$80 million
10.KFW (Germany) Tema-Sogakope DM76 million
11. AFD Takoradi-Tema Urban
Roads 20 km (Total) 7 roads US$20 million
12. AFDB Apedwa-Bunso (Achimota-
Anyinam) US$10.5 million
13. DFID (UK) Northern Regions Feeder
Roads Project US28 million The Road Fund, established by the NDC Government and re-restructured in 1997, was also calculated to raise an expected ¢1.8 trillion, using an estimated exchange rate of ¢9,000=$1. And it did, with the following as the breakdown:
Road Fund: Expected Yield 2001-2004
Year Actual Revenue Exchange Rate US$ Equivalent
2001 ¢304 billion 7,200
2002 ¢312 billion 8,000
2003 ¢623 billion ¢8,800
2004 (Estimate) ¢604 billion ¢9,000
¢1.843 trillion US$200 million Under the Road Sector Development Project, ten (10) priority roads were to be constructed to achieve regional equity as follows. RSDP Priority Roads 2000
Project Name/Description Length Average Daily Traffic Engineer's Estimate
1. Jasikan-Brewaniase (VR) 52 km 337 $13.6 million
2. Brewaniase-Oti Damanko 48 km 263 $24.0 million
3.Oti Damanko-Yendi (NR) 50 km 110 $25 million
4. Bole-Bamboi (UWR/NR) 35 km 89 $17.5 million
5.Berekum-Sampa (BAR) 30 km 370 $15 million
6. Tetteh Quarshie-Mamfe+
Interchange (GAR/ER) 40 km 25,000 $58 million
7. Techiman-Kintampo (BAR) 60 km 383 $30 million
8. Sogakope-Ho 58 km 316 $29 million
9. Ho-Fume 20.6 km 196 $10.3 million
10. Accra-Tema Motorway (Exit) 14 km 16,000 $20 million
The 3 arterial roads:
(2) Mallam-Yamoransa; and
(3) Achimota-Anyinam At the preparation of the RSDP, these three arterial roads had already got donors who had advanced loans and the projects were in advanced stages of preparation for award. The Mallam-Yamoransa road had actually been awarded to the Japanese Company, Kajimah
The Tetteh Quarshie-Mamfe road had also received part funding from AfDB.
Comments on Specific Roads
The following comments on some of the listed road projects as they are being undertaken by the NPP Government were the outcome of our investigations
1. Kwame Nkrumah Circle-Achimota (Accra-Kumasi).
The contract sum of ¢210 billion for this road does not include drainage works, relocation of utilities which came under a separate contract. The contract sum for these works should also be declared to enable us determine the cost per kilometre of this road.
This portion is now being constructed by a Chinese company for the contract sum of $28 million. That is because the Japanese withdrew their loan following our decision to access the HIPC Initiative.
This road is being financed by an African Development Bank facility approved by the Bank Board on 11th December 2000 in the amount of $25 million.
According to the estimates, $10 million is being expended on the Tetteh Quarshie Interchange. Therefore 30 kilometre Pantang-Mamfe section, a double bituminous surface, is to cost $15 million. That works out to a cost per kilometre of $500,000.
4. Kasoa-Winneba (Accra-Cape Coast)
This is a 41 kilometre stretch being funded by a Japanese grant after Japan withdrew the NDC-negotiated loan on the declaration of HIPC. The 41 kilometre single carriage road has been awarded at $22 million. The cost per kilometre therefore works out to over 500,000%.
5. Mallam-Kasoa (Accra-Cape Coast)
This section of the Accra-Cape Coast road has had to get a $20 million diversion from the IDA for face-saving, again after we lost the original loan to HIPC and realised shockingly that the Japanese grant of $80 million will not flow in one tranche.
This corridor is to open up to Yendi under the project, a total distance of 150 kilometres. three years into the programme, only the sod-cutting has been performed on a 33- kilometre stretch of the project. Under the NDC's RSDP, the project was supposed to be completed by 2005.
Funding was made readily available for this project as a result of the efficiency with which the Tema-Akosombo road project was executed which impressed the financing German Government. It represented the threshold of value for money contract in the road sector, as the 100 kilometre asphaltic road cost 230,000 DM. This was to be replicated on the Tema-Sogakope road; the reason KFW of Germany was willing to support the Tema-Sogakope-Akatsi road project.
At the very high contract sum of $176.6 million and ¢75.2 billion for this 76 kilometre road, it means that the Tema-Sogakope road is being constructed at a cost of over $2 million per kilometre!
This six kilometre arterial road in Sekondi, together with three other small roads and three roads in Tema, including the Tema-Ashaiman Overpass to the Tema Hospital road were all among a $20 million AFD facility that was negotiated by the NDC Government in 2000. Work however stalled for varied reasons.
After almost four years, this project, a total of 20 kilometres, is still not completed.
Bridges and Culverts
The NPP claims in "So Far, So Very Good" that about 1,500 culverts and bridges are being constructed throughout the country.
The NDC never counted the culverts constructed during its time because there were just too many of them and would have been a waste of valuable time. Culverts are part of the routine spot improvement component of the sector's routine maintenance programme. They constitute bottlenecks that must be removed before any road works commence.
With bridges, however, in year 2000, DFID projects in the bridge sector for the Western and Central Regions were ongoing. 18 Japanese bridges were also in the offing and another 6 DFID bridge projects for the North were at different stages of construction.
General Comment on the Road Sector Presentation
The deception in the NPP's "So Far, So Very Good" document, as with the 2004 Budget, is that they mention a tall list of roads without mentioning the number of kilometres under construction or to be constructed.
'Ghana Palaver' investigations uncovered the following facts about other sub-sectors of the Transportation sector.
The 300 buses that the NPP claims to have brought into the country for mass transportation is deceptive.
In their indecent haste to impress the electorate, the NPP initially permitted the importation of some junk of buses that created serious environmental problems. To add insult to injury, the junk buses were imported in defiance of the then existing law on right-hand drive vehicles and age limitation on vehicles.
Most of the junk buses are off the road after less than two years.
"So Far, So Very Good" is silent on "Aviation", but we have uncovered the following facts:
Phase II rehabilitation works at the Kotoka International Airport in Accra was about 70% completed at the time the NDC Government was leaving office.
The works consisted of the following:
(i) Runway extension and expansion of the tarmac and aprons for wide-bodied aircraft;
(ii) Rehabilitation, separation and upgrading of the departures and arrivals halls;
(iii) Provision of meters and greeters facilities;
(iv) Separation of domestic and international flights;
(v) Provision of flight safety equipment of the highest standards.
The cost of the project was over US$75 million and was sourced from the international money market using the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority's (GCAA) own guarantee, an indication of how viable the Authority was at the time the NDC was leaving office.
Other initiatives taken in the NDC era included the following:
(i) The signing of an Open Skies Agreement with the USA;
(ii) The development of the Kotoka International Airport into the regional hub.
We also uncovered the following facts about 'Ghana Airways':
The NDC handed over to the NPP Government very viable air routes for service delivery as follows:
(i) Accra-New York (JFK);
(ii) Accra-Baltimore (USA);
(iii) Accra-Dusseldorf (Germany);
(iv) Accra-Heathrow (UK);
(v) Accra-Rome (Italy);
(vi) Accra-Johannesburg (South Africa);
(vii) Accra-Dubai (UAE).
The NDC Government also handed over 3 DC 10 Aircraft for long-distance haul flights and 2 DC 9 Aircraft for the West Coast.
Negotiations were under way with Airbus for the supply of appropriate equipment and with KLM for the provision of management.
All these have been lost within 3½ years, with Ghana Airways' debt increasing from $100 million to $160 million and the loss of all the viable routes and all the aircraft.
In July 2004, Ghana Airways finally crashed; the Government announced the take-over of the Airline's debt of $160 million and the establishment of a 4-member Management Task Force and the selection of a certain Ghana International Airlines (GIA), a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) Company as a partner.