Kumasi, Feb 25, GNA - The Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) will from next week embark on a massive decongestion exercise to ensure the free flow of vehicular and human traffic in the Kumasi metropolis. The exercise will involve the relocation of traders and hawkers on the streets and pavements as well as other unauthorised places in the city and strict enforcement of traffic and parking rules.
The Assembly has also banned the sale of sachet water on all ceremonial roads in the metropolis with immediate effect. Mr Sampson Kwaku Boafo, acting Metropolitan Chief Executive, announced these at a news conference in Kumasi on Friday. He said the recent fire tragedy in the Kumasi Central Market had brought to the fore the need for strict compliance with the Assembly's byelaws.
Mr Boafo warned that the "disorganised manner in which the city finds itself due to congestion and flagrant display of wares on pavements, roads and other places not designed for such purposes and parking of vehicles at unauthorised places will no longer be allowed to continue".
He, however, said the exercise would be carried out with a human touch, adding that, a task force comprising the KMA city guards, the security services, Kumasi Traditional Council, transport associations, United Petty Traders Association and market queens, had been formed to "deal with offenders humanly during the exercise".
Mr Boafo, who is also the Ashanti Regional Minister, said the Race Course Market would be upgraded with the provision of security lights, places of convenience and a Police Post to make the place more attractive for the traders.
He said traffic regulations would be strictly enforced to decongest the city, stressing that a special court would be set up under the KMA to prosecute offenders.
He announced that a new parking lot had been created by the Department of Urban Roads at the Cultural Centre for private cars, while plans to beautify the city were also underway.
He said landscaping and trees would be planted in parks and places designed for beautification purposes, adding that, Indian trees would be planted on the street islands along the ceremonial roads. Mr Boafo said the Kumasi Children's Park would also be developed through private participation to make the place attractive to people for relaxation.
He appealed to the media to assist in the exercise to make Kumasi comfortable to stay.