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27.02.2006 General News

Govt to take punitive action against delay of road projects

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Accra, Feb. 27, GNA - Dr Richard Anane, Minister of Road and Transport, on Monday warned that Government would not be lenient with heads of agencies, consultants and contractors who did not execute road projects to specification and on schedule.

He said the new orientation shift of his sector Ministry would not entertain the numerous requests for the extension of time on projects with the attendant over-run costs.

Speaking at the annual Management Conference of the Ghana Highway Authority (GHA), he said the Ministry, would demand more from the Authority especially in the area of supervision and monitoring, since money from the tax payer and development partners were used for projects nationwide.

The two-day conference is on the theme: "Effective Supervision for Value for Money in the Truck Road Sector."

Dr Anane said the Ministry would demand a judicious use of the funds, diligence, circumspection, transparency and honesty in the processes towards the execution of road development and maintenance of projects.

He said the acceptance of outrageous estimates by the GHA from consultants in Ghana was frustrating hence the need to correct the anomaly.

The Minister said the high expectations from the people for good quality all- weather trunk roads, were reflected in the many comments about the standard of work, adding that these negative reports were an indictment on the professional and management competence of the Authority.

He said it was the duty of all personnel to rehabilitate the good name of the Authority as well as strive to regain the confidence, which was lost due to the apparent abdication of responsibility. Dr Anane said the Ministry was aware of the logistic and human resource constraints of the GHA as a result of the numerous responsibilities placed on its shoulders. "That, however, should not be the reason for the invention of data and the crass dereliction of duty as evidenced in the Task Force Report."

He said modernization depended on infrastructure development to accommodate modern rising needs.

However, though Ghana would be 50 years next year, some roads in the country still remained poor, even on flat, un-encumbered terrain. Mr Eric Oduro-Konadu, Chief Executive of the GHA, said the Authority would critically analyse how best to supervise and deliver road projects to meet engineering specifications at the most economical cost to the nation. He said this was very critical to GHA because it was in its mission statement to provide a reliable and safe trunk road network. 27 Feb. 06

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