Kiosks and containers taking over police stations

By Bernice Bessey & Pix Eric Owiredu

The Teasno Police barracks (left), The frontage of the Mataheko police barracks covered by kiosks and containers (right)

Kiosks and containers are one of the most common illegal structures seen in every corner of the city, to extent that the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) has designed programmes to do away with such structures.

The sad thing is that most of these structures are put up without permits from the city authorities, and in so doing deform the beauty and shape Accra.

Surprisingly, most stations and barracks of the Ghana Police Service, which assists the AMA to enforce its laws, has its premises taken over by kiosk and containers.

A tour by the Accra File to some principal police stations in the metropolis, in places such as Dansoman, Kaneshie, Mataheko and the Tesano Police Training School revealed the spate at which illegal structures had taken over the space between the fence walls of these places and the roads.

The file noted that these kiosks and containers display all kinds of wares, from clothing to foodstuffs, compelling pedestrians to walk on the streets, instead of the pavements.
Although some of the structures have red paint inscriptions on them, ‘Remove! By AMA’, the file noted that the owners of such structures ignore these warning, while new ones are being built.

One may ask why illegal structures are seen on the premises of the law enforcement agency, if charity begins from home, and if those who are mandated to enforce the laws are not example setters, then Accra achieving the Millennium City status would remain a dream.

When the file visited the Dansoman Police Station, it spotted a child of a trader defecating in a polythene bag, which will end up in a litter bin, since there is no place of convenience within the area.

Some of the traders told the file that they do not have a place to sell their wares. Meanwhile the Dansoman market is less than 200 metres from the police station, with empty stalls and spaces.

Additionally, these illegal structures also delay construction projects, especially roads, since contractors have to give notice, and also demolish these structures to pave way for development.

If care is not taken soon, the premises of the police stations will turn into markets, then the effort by the assembly to have the city as clean as possible, cannot be achieved.

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