About hundred shops at the Orion Cinema at Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra were demolished on Sunday to pave the way for the construction of the flyovers.
The exercise, which started around 5a.m., was supervised by some engineers of the Queiroz Galvao Construction Company, a Brazilian company responsible for the construction of the overpass.
Even though the traders were given a week’s notice, they could not relocate before the demolition exercise was carried out.
In spite of the short notice, the traders who managed to arrive before the exercise co-operated with the engineers as they were seen salvaging their properties and containers.
The traders in the area are mainly dealers in mobile phones, laptops and accessories, cosmetics, shoes, bags, clothing, food among other items.
A similar exercise was carried out at the Neoplan Station, affecting some shops whose owners traded in various wares.
Background of project
The Kwame Nkrumah Circle overpass project started in July this year to decongest traffic in the city.
The project is being executed by the Queiroz Galvao Construction Company, and is expected to construct two flyovers.
The first flyover will carry traffic from the Ring Road Central to the Ring Road West, and have an underpass with two lanes, while the second flyover would connect the Akasanoma Road and the Ring Road West.
The entire project is estimated at 74 million Euros and is being funded by the governments of Ghana and Brazil. The project is expected to be completed in 18 months.
Expressing his frustration, Mr Emeka Obu, a trader, said the one-week ultimatum given to them by the city authorities and the Department of Urban Roads to vacate the place was inadequate, since most of them could not find new accommodation within that period.
He indicated that traders who could not get to the area before the exercise began had their structures demolished, describing it as unfortunate and unfair.
“Some of the traders who were not here early enough had their containers and structures destroyed, meaning they will bear the cost,” Mr Obu said.
Efforts to speak to the engineers on site proved futile.
Source: Daily Graphic
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