General News of Saturday, 8 July 2017
The Concerned Assembly Members of Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly (CCMA) have expressed concern over alleged manoeuvres by the Central Regional Minister, Kwamena Duncan, and other NPP loyalists in connection with the distribution of Kotokuraba market stalls.
The aggrieved assembly members said such actions could result in legal suits as well as financial loss to the assembly.
Speaking at a press conference at Cape Coast Hotel, the secretary of the group, George Justice Arthur, said per the Local Government Act, the regional minister is not a member of the assembly, so it is unlawful for him to constitute a committee to oversee the sharing of market stalls, especially after a properly constituted committee of the assembly has prepared documents for that purpose.
Mr Arthur stated categorically that the committee constituted by the regional minister to distribute the market stalls was done in secret.
According to him, the committee set up by the regional minister expunged names of some legitimate stall owners of the old market and have included people who had no shops, thereby contravening the court’s orders.
The concerned group also accused the Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE), Ernest Arthur, of changing the original and durable locks of the market stores installed earlier by the contractors.
They projected that the unlawful actions by the Metropolitan Chief Executive, the regional minister and other NPP faithful could defeat the purpose of the redevelopment of the Kotokuraba Market by late Professor John Evans Atta Mills as well as lead to confusion and conflict among the people of Cape Coast.
The 22 concerned assembly members called on authorities to desist from the unlawful distribution of the market stalls.
The assembly member of Kroo Town electoral area, Kingsley Nana Boafo, told Class News’ Central regional correspondent, Maxwell Attah, in an interview that the “MCE is allocating market stores to NPP supporters, meanwhile the original occupants have been denied”, adding: Some of them showed their documents but they were denied access to the market.
Mr Boafo added: “The committee set for the allocation of the market stores is unconstitutional because it was done without assembly approval. Per our standing orders, any committee set to perform any function needs to come to the assembly for approval and this committee set by the regional minister is contrary to the standing orders. So it is not right; it is illegal.”
The Kotokuraba Market redevelopment was funded with a loan of 200million Chinese yuan, equivalent to US$33,333.33.
The loan is expected to be repaid by CCMA, not the Government of Ghana.
The group argued that there were no clear-cut arrangements by the assembly to repay the loan.