Gov’t injects $30m capital into struggling GRCL
The government, according to The Chronicle sources, has injected $30 million capital into the Ghana Railway Company Limited (GRCL) to enable the company become effective in its operations. The support runs from March this year to March 2021, by which time the company would have become self-reliant.
Until this financial support from the government, salaries for the workers and Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) contributions were in arrears for three months.
The Akufo-Addo government, as part of its manifesto pledges, decided to re-capitalise and revamp the ailing railway company with several projects currently being undertaken across the country.
The Managing Director of the GRCL, Mr. John Essel, in a press release, confirmed the capital injection by the government, but failed to disclose that the amount given to them was $30 million. “Through the effort of government, GRCL will, aside the capital injection into the company by the government, take delivery of track tools, spare parts and equipment to facilitate the rehabilitation of five locomotives and several mineral wagons to augment the current fleet of manganese trains, which will further increase the haulage of manganese ore for export,” he said.
Mr. John Essel was grateful to the government for its continuous support to the Ghana Railway Company, and promised that management and the entire workforce will also perform their roles assiduously to make sure the railways in Ghana become the most preferred mode of transportation in passenger and goods services, not only in the country, but beyond its shores.
The Ghana Railway recently started the Takoradi Tarkwa commercial transport service, but was forced to suspend the shuttle because of operational challenges.
On Tuesday, the Minister of Railway Development signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Global Railway Engineering Limited of South Africa to establish a railways assembly plant in Ghana.
The feasibility study is expected to be completed by October this year through its local partners, Global Railway Engineering Ghana, to start assembling wagons, rolling stocks, and locomotives. The Minister for Railways, Joe Ghartey, signed the agreement on behalf of the Railway Ministry, with the Director of Global Railway Engineering Ghana on behalf of his company.
The agreement was witnessed by the Deputy High Commissioner of South Africa to Ghana, Mr. Thapelo Madumane.
Decades of neglect and underfunding had left the railway company in tatters.