DISPLACED RESIDENTS of Sraha East in Adjei-Kojo near Ashaiman, whose houses were demolished by the Tema Development Corporation (TDC) some two years ago, are appealing to President John Dramani Mahama to intervene and return their lands to them.
The over 200 residents who were rendered homeless have pleaded with the President to extend the compassion that made him to house the ex-Gitmo detainees in Ghana to them by giving them their lands back or house them like the detainees he brought into the country.
According to them, their compensation is long overdue and they need their lands to build their houses again.
The disgruntled residents were clad in red and black clothes and chanted war songs to express their displeasure over their eviction from the land they claimed they bought from the traditional rulers in the area.
Earlier, as part of activities marking two years after they were evicted by the TDC, a news conference was held at Promise Land, one of the demolished suburbs of Sraha East, where Nii Djorwunu I, the Chief of Sraha, mentioned that their petition to the President about the issue was yet to be responded to.
According to him, four former tenants of the land died out of shock following the demolition, with two others mentally unstable after the eviction.
“Two years ago was a sad day for us when our children came back from school and saw their parents’ buildings that they slept inside the previous night destroyed by bulldozers from TDC supported by soldiers.
“The children have to sleep in open places at the mercy of misquotes and snakes,” he pointed out.
Chairman of the Sraha East Residents Association, Francis K. Dzivenu, also appealed to the President to respond to their petition.
According to him, over a year since the President was petitioned by the residents, they are yet to hear from him, noting that the continuous silence of the President is affecting their lives since they have remained homeless.
“We are therefore pleading with His Excellency President Mahama to have mercy on us and return our lands to us with compassion…like what he did for the ex-Gitmo detainees,” he appealed.
He said he believed that the President had been misinformed by his appointees about the real situation in the area, adding that “The President swore an oath to protect and defend Ghanaians and the country at large and he needs to redeem his promise as we are in an election year.”
Interestingly enough, when DAILY GUIDE toured the lands the TDC had claimed were in a waterlogged area, the paper discovered that the corporation had re-demarcated the area and constructed roads as well as drains, obviously preparing to build on the lands or sell them.
Also, over two years since the demolition exercise took place, some of the victims still sleep in tents provided by the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) while others sleep under trees at the mercy of mosquitoes and other insects.
Most parts of the lands have also become bushy, exposing the victims to snakes and other dangers.
From Vincent Kubi, Adjei-Kojo