General News of Saturday, 6 April 2013
Residents of the country’s bread hub, Nsawam, in the Eastern Region are living in fear following the collapsed of the only footbridge that connects the town to other communities.
This was after the wooden panels on the footbridge over the Densu River on the main Accra-Kumasi highway was removed by officials of the Ghana Highway Authority to enable repair works to be done due to defects.
Pedestrians have since had to compete with vehicles, bicycles, motorbikes and heavy duty trucks for space on the road.
This is said to have resulted in several accidents with some innocent school children having been knocked down by vehicles.
Two weeks ago, Abdul Rashid Mustapha was knocked down by one of such vehicles which nearly claimed his life.
The situation seemed to be equally having a telling effect on commercial activities in the area since a number of bread sellers who spoke to DAILY GUIDE said their daily sales had reduced drastically.
This, they said, was due to the fact that most drivers have now resorted to the Aburi-Koforidua road instead of Nsawam because of the inconvenience and the narrow nature of the road.
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Nsawam-Adoagyiri, Frank Annoh Dompreh, who has consistently complained about the development on various platforms, described the current state of the bridge as a ‘death trap’.
Apart from bringing it to the attention of the Municipal Chief Executive, he claimed to have also made an official complaint to officials of the Ghana Highways Authority.
Nsawam residents went into wild jubilation when work commenced on the footbridge some two weeks ago.
But that was short-lived as the construction was said to have ended abruptly due to shortage of materials which the MP said were bolts and nuts for the project.
“That excuse being given is so bad and untenable; I think the government needs to look at this thing once and for all. If they are not ready for it, they shouldn’t have even taken the structures off; all they should have done was put in a temporary measure; replace the wooden structure until they get all the necessary accessories before removing the wooden structure,” Annoh-Dompreh stated.
The bridge has therefore been hanging, with only a small stretch having been constructed while the remaining part remained collapsed, posing serious threat to pedestrians.
The Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Nsawam-Adoagyiri, Mark Dompreh, said they have equally been putting pressure on the authorities at the Ghana Highways to construct the bridge.
He claimed to have received assurance from the authorities of the Ghana Highways to resume work by April 15, 2013, and was certain they would complete it in no time.