Leaders of the respective traders unions at the Kejetia Lorry Park on Tuesday engaged the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly as part of pragmatic processes towards fast-tracking their relocation to make way for the redevelopment of the park.
The project forms part of the redevelopment of the Central Business District of the city which also includes the central market.
The meeting which started under a tensed atmosphere with the traders, entertaining fears from what they termed “ambiguities surrounding question of whether or not the lorry park was initially a part of the redevelopment exercise,” enjoyed some camaraderie before it closed.
This was after the Mayor Mr. Kojo Bonsu, had explained that there were some communication gaps initially and that accounted for the misunderstandings over whether or not the lorry park was to be developed alongside the central market.
He duly apologized, promising that once the project has been approved by parliament, it is a must-do exercise and therefore appealed for their support to ensure the project takes off immediately.
The agitated traders, some of whom had come to the assembly clad in red and holding placards, requested to see the project contract to ascertain whether or not indeed the lorry park was originally earmarked for redevelopment under the CBD as claimed by the KMA.
Mr. Bonsu indicated that, even though it was a public document, the front of the traders should officially write requesting it and his office would be glad to give them a copy to allay their fears borne out of skeptism regarding the project details.
The Mayor expressed profound gratitude to the traders for honoring the invitation to dialogue, assuring them that his office will continue to use dialogue until all stakeholders arrive at a mutual understanding on the way forward, noting that even though the project cannot wait or be delayed any longer, it’s appropriate to respect all stakeholders in the process, hence the dialogues.
The leaders and the traders had no choice but to eventually joined the Mayor as they sang, “Asida ye Onyame nie dea”, after nerves had calmed down following a successful end to the meeting.
Mr. Bonsu later presented to the leadership of the traders, a copy of the joint memorandum that was submitted to Parliament by the then Minister of Local Government and Rural Development Julius Debrah and the Minister of Finance Seth E. Terkper on the “Modernization of the Kumasi Central Market and Kejetia Infrastructure Project, signed on 16 th July, 2014.
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