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03-Nov-2015  
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Africa Centre for Development and Progress (CADeP) has made it clear that the regional airport in Ho in the Volta region would become another white elephant project, adding that it was not properly thought through.

It has therefore urged the government to abandon the airport and rather channel the funds into other important sectors of the economy.

According to the CADeP, the airport is not viable and does not make economic sense at a time when resources are needed in some critical areas of the economy such as roads, power generation, among others.”

Its Executive Chairman, Johannes Koku Nyagblorzdro told Today in an interview that he is worried the airport will become another failed project, describing it as a complete waste of state resources.

Justifying his call, Mr. Nyagblorzdro questioned whether enough due diligence was done on the project before money was voted for it.

He thought government should rather improve road infrastructure to increase economic activities like farming and trading which is the main stay of the people in Ho and surrounding areas.

“You don’t expect an aircraft to take off from Accra and land in 5 minutes,” he declared, saying “the essence of Airport being at Volta region is miscalculated and misplaced.”

“We don’t need flight from Volta region to the North, or Kumasi.”

Mr. Nyagblorzdro argued out that existing local flights from Accra, Kumasi, Takoradi and Tamale were already struggling due to low patronage.

“How much more Ho, which cannot boast of any major economic activity?,” he quizzed.

In his opinion “Ho is virtually in Accra due to its proximity to the national capital so another Airport is not needed now.”

President John Dramani Mahama in September this year performed a ground-breaking ceremony for the commencement of work on the new Airport at Titrinu near Ho.

Amadi Holdings are the contractors for the project.

The Airport, sitting on a 1,500 acre land, would include an airport city with amenities to provide critical services like health, hotel accommodation among others.

The facility would also have a runway measuring 1,900 metres, air traffic control tower, and 1,150 capacity passenger waiting area.

The project estimated to cost $25 million is in fulfillment of a campaign promise in 2012 by President Dramani Mahama and the ruling party.

It is being funded by Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL).

Government is hoping the airport when completed would open up the Volta region to boost business activities and tourism.

But CADeP wondered whether any serious flight would dare contemplate plying Ho because it does not make business sense to do so.

Mr. Nyagblorzdro also questioned the rationale behind governments’ decision to construct an airport in every region of Ghana.

He said airports should not be built simply because of politics but must be properly thought through taking into consideration their viability.

It would be recalled that the President of the Volta Regional House of Chiefs, Togbe Afede XIV, during the sod-cutting ceremony also expressed concerns that the airport should not be allowed to become a white elephant.

He feared low patronage would render the multi-million dollar project a waste.
 
 
Source: Today
 
 

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