05.05.2005 Regional News

KMA urged to be transparent in re-allocation exercise

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Kumasi, May 05, GNA - Mr Kofi Opoku Adusei, the Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, on Thursday asked the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) to take steps to provide the basic necessities needed at the various satellite markets in the metropolis to attract traders and patronage.

He also told the assembly to be transparent in the re-allocation of market sites to hawkers and traders who had been displaced by the recent decongestion exercise to ensure that each of them was allocated a place in one of the satellite markets.

Mr Adusei was speaking to newsmen after visiting some satellite markets in the Kumasi metropolis.

Some of the markets he visited were the Patasi, Kwadaso Estates, Kwadaso, Tafo Nhyieaso, Krofrom and the Race Course markets. Most of the markets were found to be virtually empty with while some of the shops had been turned into residential facilities. The few traders who spoke to the Mr Adusei complained about poor patronage and lack of basic facilities such as toilets and urinal at the markets.

Mr Adusei said the ministry's directive did not state that hawkers should go back to the streets to sell.

''The directive did not ask the assemblies which had already started the exercise to halt it.''

He said the ministry's intervention was to allow the assemblies to look at both sides of the exercise and to ensure that the affected hawkers were resettled.

Mr Adusei said the government was doing everything possible to assist the assemblies to find amicable solution to the problem and called on all Ghanaians to support the government and the assemblies to rid the streets of hawkers.

At the Race Course market Mr Atta Boafo, chairman of the KMA Decongestion Exercise Committee, told Mr Adusei that the assembly might require about 60 billion cedis to construct a new market to settle about 3,500 traders and hawkers.

Mr Charles Ampoma Mensah, KMA City Engineer, said the critical issue facing the assembly was how to secure funding for the project. He, however, said the assembly was seeking private involvement in the project, adding that, about three private investors had expressed interest in the project.

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