A trader wailing as AMA workers break down tables (inset)
The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) has commenced the demolition of unauthorized structures at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle.
The demolition exercise commenced at about 6:00 am yesterday, and the AMA team was supervised by heavily armed police officers from the Greater Accra Regional Command.
The taskforce, with about 50 members, destroyed all unauthorized structures, particularly those around the interchange, to the chagrin of some hawkers.
Public Relations Officer (PRO) of AMA, Numo Blafo Akotia, said the exercise was the beginning of efforts to ensure that government’s pledge to make Accra the cleanest city in Africa is realised.
Recently, President Akufo-Addo told Ga chiefs that “the commitment we are making and which I want you all to make with me is that by the time we end our four-year term, Accra is going to be the cleanest city in Africa.”
A disgruntled trader, who was affected by the demolition exercise, admitted that the assembly notified them three weeks ahead of the exercise, but said the city authorities had failed to offer alternative places for them to do their trading.
“Where do they expect us to go, now that they have demolished our structures? They gave us a three-week ultimatum but they did not give us an alternative venue for us to relocate to. We do not have any place to sell our wares and we have to work to cater for our family. Government should have found a convenient place for us before demolishing our structures,” he lamented.
Director of Operations at the AMA , Mohammed Naziru, stressed that the assembly issued prior notice and could not be held to ransom.
“The AMA taskforce is not happy about this development. That is why we came to speak to them to find another place. Nana Addo’s priority is to make Accra clean and that is why we are embarking on this exercise,” he explained.
The city of Accra has virtually been besieged by traders who are unlawfully hawking various types of wares at the Circle (Dubai), and under newly constructed foot-bridges at Shiashie and East Legon.
Additionally, a walkway towards Accra Mall has been overtaken by traders.