Accra, Jan 9, GNA – Some aggrieved landlords and landladies along the Madina-Pantang Highway in Adenta, have called on President John Evans Atta Mills to call to order personnel of the Ghana Highways Authority (GHA) who are persistently harassing them.
They claimed they have the necessary documents covering the lands they acquired years ago along the highway, and are therefore against moves by the GHA to demolish their structures.
Seven of the residents who stormed the offices of the Ghana News Agency in Accra, wielding their eviction and compensation letters said government had not fully paid for the demolition of some of their structures a couple of years ago, and would therefore not accept any compensation from the GHA for another intended demolitions.
Tearful Madam Agnes Seho, Spokesperson of the residents said a couple of years ago, the Authority promised to compensate them for destroying their structures to pave way for the construction of the new Madina-Pantang road.
She said part payments were made to them before the demolition exercise was carried out, but since then efforts to get the last instalment paid had proved futile.
“As if that was not enough, GHA wrote to us to demolish other structures that were far away from the newly constructed road. This is a deliberate attempt to impoverish, push and marginalise us,” she said.
Madam Seho said although they received a reply to a petition they sent to the President on the issue, calling for an amicable settlement between them and the GHA, the Authority rather threatened them with more demolition exercises.
She asked: “If for about two years now, they have not paid us our compensation… how can we be sure that our monies would be received to enable us to re-settle in new sites?”
The letters signed by the Acting Chief Executive of the GHA, Mr P.M. Dagadu ranged the compensation from GH₵ 4,500.00 to GH₵ 57,000.00, but the residents said they were not enthused about the offer, because they believe it was a bait to deprive them of their property without compensation.
She alleged that as a result of their struggle to maintain their property, one of the residents, Mr John Quarshie and his son Gideon Quarshie were brutalised by police and thugs leading to the death of 29-year-old Gideon without any enquiry.
The residents pleaded with President Mills to set up a special committee to investigate the stalemate and bring lasting solutions to the issue.
“We are all Ghanaians, and therefore deserve justice and peace. We will therefore not allow some few people to continue trampling upon the rights of the marginised in the society.” She added.
A letter from the office of the President signed by J.K. Bebaako-Mensah to the residents recognised them as the rightful owners of the land and the affected property.
“Our investigations with the Ministry of Roads and Highways revealed that you and other petitioners are the rightful owners of the land and the affected properties,” the letter said.
“In the light of the above, it is suggested that you collaborate with the Ministry to resolve the matter amicably,” Mr Bebaako-Mensah said.