The twin-city, Sekondi-Takoradi in the Western Region appears to be under siege from both human and vehicular traffic seven years into the discovery of oil.
The conjoined city has also had many big companies, particularly financial institutions (insurance and banking) moving from their comfort zones in Accra, Tema and Kumasi for business in the city.
Their presence has brought about competition among them and other companies already in existence for office and residential accommodation.
This new development has seen economic activities in the metropolis quadruple, bringing in substantial revenue for the assembly to use to support various development projects in the city. But in spite of this, social infrastructure such as roads, and hospitals, and are yet to receive the needed attention.
Besides these, the twin-city, once voted the cleanest in the country, is grappling with sanitation and congestion issues.
With the business climate looking favourable, the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolitan Assembly has undertaken an aggressive revenue mobilisation drive and has exceeded its revenue target for the first quarter of this year. The assembly is hoping to do even better before the end of the year.
The assembly has projected this year to generate an estimated amount of ¢4.5 million in revenue for development.
For the first quarter of 2014, the assembly projected to collect GH¢1 million. As at the end of March 31, it had realised ¢1.7 million, representing a 7-per cent increase.
Addressing the general assembly, the Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE), Captain Anthony R. Cudjoe (retd), said the major contributing factors for the impressive performance had to do with increased revenue from fees for licences, which accounted for about 26 per cent of the total revenue.
“Even though the assembly was able to exceed its revenue target, there was the need for the assembly to ensure a better revenue generation system to improve on the current success,” he said.
He said projects funded from the district assemblies common fund were facing implementation difficulties due to disbursement challenges associated with the fund.
That notwithstanding, he said, a number of projects, including the provision of waste management services, constructional works at the Takoradi Market Circle, a 16-seater W/C toilet facility at Mempeasem, a 16-unit classroom block with furnishing at Old Adra, Takoradi, were funded from the common fund.
He said following the increase in population and the demand for improved facilities, the assembly was working to improve on social infrastructure to meet the growing demand.
He said the assembly was currently working with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to put up an environmentally- friendly fish- smoking facility in Sekondi for the fishing community.
The project, he said, was estimated at GH¢138,000.00.
He said it was expected to ease the burden of fishmongers who still employed unorthodox means to process their fish.
The MCE for Sekondi-Takoradi said the assembly was following closely the progress of work on the expansion of the Kansaworodo road, among other, to improve access to the city.
According to Capt. Cudjoe, the Urban Roads Department would start work on many projects this year.
He said some of the contracts had been awarded while others were at the preparatory and tendering stages.
Tour of metropolis
In another development, the Daily Graphic undertook a tour of the city and observed that filth had overtaken most parts of the metropolis. Gutters were choked with solid waste while hawkers who had refused to move to Apremdo as ordered by the assembly had taken over most of the spaces around the market circle in the central business district.
At some locations in the city, storm drains had become silted. Moreover, commercial drivers have turned street corners into bus terminals, creating a lot of congestion in the metropolis.
The Western Regional Coordinating Council (WRCC) has deplored the current situation and called on the assembly to immediately take steps to restore the city to hygienic conditions and also decongest the metropolis.
Source: Daily Graphic
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