The collapse of Prairie Volta Limited (PVL) formerly Aveyime Rice Project situated at Mafi-Aloryi in the Volta Region under the watch of Mahama-led National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration has fuelled fire again in the host communities.
Some aggrieved chiefs and youth in the beneficiary districts, including North, Central and South Tongu, have called on President John Dramani Mahama to expedite action to revive the once vibrant rice producing company before Tuesday, December 2, 2016.
Failure on the part of government of the NDC to honour this obligation, they stressed, would lead to a massive demonstration.
“If we do not see any concrete sign that work has resumed on the PVL before Tuesday, the demonstration will go on,” some traditional leaders and youth in Aveyime, Battor, Mepe, Adidome, Dokpo, Mafi-Aloryi, Sogakope, Bakpa, Mafi Kumase and Mafi-Dove areas including sacked workers of PVL told Today.
When Today visited the project site at Mafi-Aloryi recently to ascertain the facts on the collapsed project, the traditional leaders and the youth lamented that the collapse of the company under NDC government had adversely affected their fortunes and lives of the people in the three districts of the region.
Fuming with rage, the leaders blamed government for the collapse of the company, stressing that the primary cause of the state of affairs at the company was the years of neglect by the largest stakeholder in the project which is government of Ghana.
They further stressed that the communities needed the government to intervene by reinvesting in the PVL to revive the company before the country goes to the polls to elect its leader on December 7, 2016.
“We need government’s quick intervention to revive the company. Once it is on our land, we all expect it to grow and generate employment for the teeming youth, particularly the employees from the Takoradi Polytechnic who are ready to use their technical know-how to bring more innovation into the company,” they stated.
In their estimation, government did not have to be the sole owner before it will assist the ailing company.
They noted that if the PVL could generate a quarter of the country’s rice imports, the savings on the import bill would be beneficial to the country.
What is even painful, according to them, was the government’s inability to pay the ten months salary arrears to the over 500 workers who were sent home after the collapse of the company.
On their part some leaders in Aveyime, Mepe, Battor, Bakpa, Adidome, Sogakope and Dadome who spoke to Today appealed to government to help revive the PVL in order to bring life to the three districts.
“As a result of the collapse of the company our children can no longer go to school, because we can’t pay their fees, thereby leaving the children to engage in anti-social activities,” they asserted.
They pleaded with government to come to the aid of the company, saying it gave a lot of indirect employment to women who sold to the workers while the company was thriving.
Some of the affected workers lamented their inability to repay loans they secured from Battor and Mepe Rural Banks.
“We are just loitering, as the factory is not functioning and we do not know what they will do”. “If it is revived we the workers will go back and find something to do and there will also be food in our houses,” the workers stated.
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