Editorial: Early Completion Of Ofankor-Nsawam Highway Is Very Important

When the government of Ghana, through the Ghana Highways Authority, started the re-construction of the Ofankor-Nsawam highway in July, 2022 many commuters heaved a sigh of relief. because of the hassle they were going through before traversing the corridor.

The road, which forms part of the National Route 6 (N6) and a key link between Accra and Kumasi, is costing the tax payer $42 million. The completion date, as announced by the government when the project started, was July 2024.

With July 2024 just around the corner, the Chief Resident Engineer overseeing the project, Ing. Kwabena Bempong, has told Citi FM, as reported by myjoyonoine.com, that the completion date cannot be met.

“We have requested the Contractor to give us a revised programme and obviously for a project like this, we need to have an extension of time approved by the Ministry of Roads and Highways and until that, we cannot say anything.

“So far as we are concerned, the completion date is July, but we all know that it is not possible so the contractor will have to give us compelling reasons why it is not possible to complete it on the date that was originally scheduled,” Bempong was quoted as saying.

He added that the delay is mainly due to the need to relocate utility lines and compensate persons affected by the construction.

“Relocation of utility lines and longitudinal drains are some of the major reasons the project has been delayed. We are relocating electricity, water and communication lines.

“The other challenge is the relocation of people affected by the project. There are people who are trying to injunct the project and we still have litigations. We are two years into the project and we still have some of the utility lines in the road space,” he reportedly told the radio station.

Road construction is not a child’s play so one will be tempted to sympathise with the contractor based on the reasons that have been given by the resident engineer for not meeting the targeted date to complete the whole project.

But, at the same time, one may also be tempted to ask as to whether all the obstacles mentioned above were not factored into the equation before the July 2024 deadline was set for the completion of the project.

Since the Accra-Kumasi highway is the busiest in the country, commuters, especially those living in and around Amasaman, Dobro, Nsawam, Pobiman and those traveling to Kumasi and beyond are always caught up in an unbearable traffic jam.

What has even worsened the situation is the setting in of the rains, which has made the road surface very rough and difficult to drive on it. The Chronicle is, therefore, appealing to the government and in this case, the Ministry of Roads and Highways, to intervene and ensure that all the obstacles thwarting the early completion of the project have been addressed.

The delay in completing the dual carriage way beyond certain period of time will exacerbate the already precarious situation confronting commuters.

Apart from productive hours that are being wasted in traffic, the authorities should not gloss over the health implications as well.

The Chronicle is also appealing to property owners who have reportedly taken the contractor to court to soften their stance and negotiate for the early settlement of the case. The economic value of the road being referenced is simply immeasurable and we all have the duty to ensure its early completion.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here