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04.03.2005 Regional News

Upper East Contractors adopt teamwork

By GNA

Bolgatanga, March 4, GNA - The Upper East Regional branch of the Association of Road Contractors (ASROC) on Friday decided to adopt teamwork to enable them acquire contracts that would otherwise be too expensive for individuals.

They said they would stand a better chance of winning a bid when they enter the competition in groups of three or four instead of shying away from big contracts that might be too expensive for an individual. "Our method of bidding makes us poor, we all compete and give low prices, and in the end we make loses. If we depend on competitive bidding we will forever remain poor", they said.

The contractors, who were having their annual general meeting in Bolgatanga, said it was not the best thing for them and the region when contractors from other parts of the country compete and win bids for big contracts only to abandon them uncompleted.

This causes the region to loose since the unused money in such cases is usually sent back to government coffers.

Mr Philip Azumah, treasurer of the association, suggested that ASROC employ competent persons who may not necessarily be contractors to negotiate on behalf of members in times of difficulties.

Mr Azuma said some of their members who acquired contracts at certain estimates last year were now facing difficulties as prices of working material, especially iron rods, had increased tremendously. Mr. Eric Asumda, Vice Chairman of ASROC, said bad work and delays at finishing contracts were not always the sole faults of contractors as the public seem to believe.

He said road agencies, delayed payments and shortage of working materials were all contributory factors.

He said a new payment system was being worked out for maintenance projects whereby all certificates, after going through the processing system, will be sent to the Road Fund for transfer of the claim into the account of the beneficiary account.

Mr Asumda cautioned his colleagues against taking loans and overdrafts from the banks in view of the high interest rates. "You will only be working for the banks if you depend on their loans to do your work."

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