Mr Martins Kwasi Nnuro, President of the Association of Building and Civil Engineering Contractors of Ghana taken swipe at government for sidelining local contracts when it comes to the award of government contracts.
“Our people are often sidelined and ignored when it comes to a lot of large, very good or sustainable construction contracts,” he said.
Speaking at the association’s Annual General Meeting, Mr Nnuro also took a swipe at government for failing to pay local construction companies on time for jobs executed.
He said many of their members were drowning in debt because of government's failure to pay for projects on time.
Mr Nnuro described the situation as 'serious' saying the construction industry in Ghana was lurching to a 'crisis.'
The construction industry is estimated to contribute between 10 and 15 percent to the Gross Domestic Product.
Mr. Nnuro said the situation has made it difficult for many members of the association to upgrade their skills and pay salaries for employees, adding “Government for the past two years has not been awarding new construction contracts due to lack of funds”.
“With interest rates hovering between five and six percent per month and contractors' payments for claims delaying for over a year, construction companies say they have become enslaved to financial institutions”.
The association also expressed concern over donor driven construction projects saying they favoured foreigners while locals were only being engaged as sub-contractors.
Mr Nnuro said the association is taking steps to have policies enacted making it mandatory to allocate 30 percent of the work and its management to local contractors.
Nnuro questioned the rationale behind using all money raised in the recent Eurobond to defray payment claims of only foreign contractors.
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