A Deputy General Secretary of the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), Kofi Adams, is demanding that government appointees douse themselves from sleep and see to it that every project they “dragged” President J.E.A. Mills to cut the sod is completed.
According to him, President Mills was somewhat wheedled by some ministers into cutting the sod for the commencement of some projects even when they (ministers) knew the projects were not viable.
In a not so direct remark, Kofi Adams said the apparent failure of the controversial STX Housing Project which would have seen the construction of housing units for the security services but has now become a white elephant should be blamed solely on the various ministries which had oversight responsibility over the project.
The NDC Deputy Scribe said recent comments by the Vice-President, John Dramani Mahama and that of the Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing, clearly indicate it will be in everyone’s best interest if government washes its hands off the project, since the partners have spent more time fighting than using the country’s sovereign guarantee to secure funds for the project.
The Vice President told journalists in Accra on December 30, 2011 that the $10 billion deal between the government of Ghana and STX Korea will be terminated due to boardroom wrangling between the Ghanaian company and its Korean counterpart which has stalled the project.
“The way things are going, I don’t see how that project will go on. The wrangling is getting worse rather than getting better, so I don’t see how that project will go forward,” Mr. Mahama said.
Similarly, the Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing, Alban Bagbin, announced on Tuesday, January 3rd, that the Attorney General will soon advise President John Evans Atta Mills on the final decision to take on the almost botched STX housing project.
Ever since President John Evans Atta Mills cut the sod on Thursday January 27, 2011 at the Police Training Depot at Tesano in Accra for the commencement of the project, boardroom wrangling between the Ghanaian company and their Korean partners had ensured that not a single block has been laid even though a land at Kwabenya in Accra was purportedly cleared for that purpose.
The US$10 billion housing deal out of which $1. 5 billion was to have been used to build 30,000 housing units for Ghana’s security agencies hit a snag following boardroom and courtroom wrangling between both parties (STX Ghana and STX Korea).
Speaking to the issue on Peace FM’s Kokrokoo Morning Show, the spokesperson for former President Jerry John Rawlings condemned the attitude of certain ministers of state who he accused of pushing the President to engage in the fad for sod-cutting, and also urged that explanations are offered regarding projects that have stalled.
“I want to advice some of our Ministers and government appointees. Most of them virtually dragged the president to cut sod for the commencement of various projects in their ministries. They should endeavor to see to the completion of those that can readily be commissioned and projects that cannot be completed, they should be forthcoming with explanations forthwith….So that it wouldn’t turn out that the President is dragged to cut sod for projects you (Minister) know cannot see the light of day…,” he said.
He was emphatic that since the President does not table agreements and contracts, that is why he has appointed ministers to ensure that everything goes as planned.
“…(sometimes) it is not the president who does all these agreements and contracts…It is the Minister who knows which projects are ready for take-off and calls on the president to do the sod-cutting…You wheedle the president into cutting sod for such projects and then go to bed leaving the president to be flaked. They (ministers) have to wake up and see to it that any project they dragged the president to perform a sod-cutting ceremony is completed; even if they have to work 24hrs a day,” he stated.
Meanwhile, President John Evan Atta Mills is expected to take a final decision on the controversial STX Housing deal soon after the counsel of the Attorney General.
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