General News of Tuesday, 29 May 2018
The TDC Development Company has begun demolishing some units of the iconic Kaizer flats declared unfit for human habitation.
The demolishing exercise, which is being undertaking by the 48 Engineers Regiment of the Ghana Armed Forces would see the flattening of four blocks.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), the Protocol Officer of the TDC, Mr. Ian Oquaye, said “we have done pre-demolishing sensitization, and areas where there were issues, we have engaged the residents and are prepared to address any issue that comes up.”
According to him, the debris from the demolished structures would be separated with the metal waste given directly to companies that dealt in metals, while the broken blocks used to fill low lying areas which were prone to flooding during the rainy season.
He added that, “It’s not as if the place would be left for people to come and do commercial activities; there would be twenty-four hour security by the 48 Engineers Regiment to ward off unwanted persons.”
The Assembly man of the Horticulture Electoral Area, which houses the Kaizer Flats, observed that the flats that were being demolished were not different from the ones that were still standing.
He therefore pleaded with the TDC to come out early with compensation terms for the other residents so they would not be taken by surprise since they could also suffer the same fate.
He advised unaffected residents to come together and renovate their blocks before they also faced a possible ejection.
A resident of one of the unaffected flats, Mrs. Nina Mantey observed that those who were not affected by the demolishing had had their garages broken down and therefore asked for compensation from the TDC.
Mrs. Mantey wondered why the TDC did not relocate all the residents before the exercise, considering the possible dangers they faced amidst the banging of bulldozers, the whirling of dust and the general dangers associated with a demolishing site.
Madam Anita Ampofo, also a resident, complained of the relocation of some squatters from the area of demolishing to some parts the unaffected flats, adding that, “This poses problems for us and we want authorities to address that.”
As at the time the Ghana News Agency (GNA) got to the demolishing site, one block had already been pulled down and the earth moving machines at the command of the engineers were devouring the second block.
It would be recalled that four blocks of the Kaizer Flats were declared unfit by city engineers and residents were given up to the first of February 2018 to vacate.
Residents had fought in vain through the courts and public demonstrations to save the blocks which were a memorial to the creation of the modern city of Tema.