The Local Government Committee of Parliament has stressed the need for the early release of funds by the Ministry of Finance to facilitate the completion of District Assembly Common Fund (DACF) infrastructure projects in the six newly created regions.
The committee said efforts to complete DACF-funded projects in the new regions would continue to lag behind if the Ministry of Finance failed to release the funds on time.
The Ranking Member on the committee, Nii Lante Vanderpuye, stated this in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Techiman after a tour of some ongoing projects in the Bono East Region.
He led a seven-member committee to inspect various DACF-funded projects that were being executed in the Western North, Bono, Bono East, Ahafo and the Ashanti regions.
During the tour, some contractors and officials of the Architectural and Engineering Service Limited (AESL) and Eco-planners Engineering Consult, supervisors of the projects in the beneficiary regions, mentioned delayed payments of contractors as one major hurdle facing early execution of the projects.
The team visited Techiman, the regional capital of the Bono East Region, to inspect the construction of three staff bungalows, as well as a GH¢16.9 million new administration block for the RCC, which is being executed by Alke Ghana Limited.
The project started in October 2019 and was supposed to be completed in August 2020 but is currently said to be 68 per cent complete.
The Project Manager, Mr Daniel Enyimah, identified delayed payment as a major factor slowing the progress of work on the project.
“If there is prompt payments of funds, it will significantly facilitate speedy execution of the project,” he told members of the committee.
In the Nkoranza North District in the Bono Region, the team inspected the construction of a two-storey administration block for the assembly at Nkoranza.
The project was awarded by the Ministry of Regional Re-organisation and Development in Accra in November 2019 to Joemart Construction Company and it was expected to have been completed in August 2020.
Currently, the contractor is said to have abandoned work on the GH¢3.74 million project. The project is said to be 48 per cent complete.
“The contractor left the site because he complained of delayed payment,” the Zonal Consultant of the AESL, Mr Edward Agyeman-Prempeh, who is overseeing DACF-funded projects in the Ahafo, Bono and Bono East regions, told the committee.
At Jinijini, the capital of the Berekum West District Assembly, also in the Bono Region, the team inspected works on the administration block for the assembly. The project was also awarded by the Ministry of Local Government to Jabora Company Limited, started in February 2020 and was expected to be completed in August 2020.
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