Lets Get It Right

 

road

it is indeed with great trepidation that i write this blog article. what is it with executing contracts in Ghana that we can not seem to get it right every time i would have loved to write a satirical piece about how we execute especially road contracts in Ghana but i am not in the mood to be creative but very blunt so that the whos it concerns will get it since they seem to be as shallow as the receding irrigation ponds in the savanna.

i will not even go into a list of the projects that i have been peeved about but then i will mention a few that affects the Ghanaian directly even though they all do.

contracts are given in Ghana and obviously they are geared towards facilitating free flow of movements of goods and services and even human transport from one place to the other albeit providing social infrastructure. but the execution of these contracts always leaves so much to be desired probably because the bidding process involves so much kickbacks that in the end the money for the contract is spread so thin that it results in very shoddy work.

let us examine the road in front of my house in Tamale that was constructed a fortnight before election and then you pass on it now and realize that it would have been better if the road had not been constructed at all. suffice it to say that we have enjoyed a relief from the dust for a couple of months.

how about the speed ramps that are springing up everywhere and i’m surprised to notice that there are even potholes on some speed ramps. how that is possible only they know. then the roundabout potholes that has been fixed nine times in four years at the Tamale Sports Stadium.

i know you are reading this and you know these are not isolated cases and we find them all around us. every time we are patching something. we have become patching technocrats.

now let us also take the eastern corridor road. i remember some government spokespersons touting that they had used it and the road was pretty passable and i was not surprised in the least when they only used the road sitting in their air conditioned offices in Accra and using computers to take satellite shots of a non existent road. and even if they did, it was in fully fitted air-conditioned v8 cars. the road is so bad that a cyclist doing a national tour for a cause called me to ask me where the road was. when i replied that by his location he was on the road, his comments are unprintable here.

to examine the timing of the projects if even they are to be executed is another thing. we never seem to get it right and it is only to the advantage and comfort of some people without considering the users albeit it is for the general good. let us take for example the renovation of the under bridge by pass, in Accra somewhere last year and the commotion it caused to commuters for the several days that this ‘renovations’ went on. people were stuck in traffic into the early hours of the morning even past midnight just to get home from work.

oh i hear the same is happening at the Tema roundabout now, just after the motorway.

somewhere early this year too the Yapei bridge which is one of the main connectors of the northern region to the south was also closed for repair works for the second time and i took to social media to complain but alas i am a lone voice in the wilderness. assuming you were travelling from Accra up north it meant that you had to get to the bridge before the closure at 1400GMT  every day or else risk waiting for it to be reopened at 0600GMT the next morning. what this meant is that all schedules within the north and the south had to be tailored around the opening and closing of the bridge for that long.

the first time the bridge was closed it was for several weeks and even in those first two weeks or so, there were no materials so the bridge was closed and yet there was no signs of work on the bridge. it happened again the second time and now i hear there is going to be a third closure.

what at all are we doing at the bridge that we can not have it done just once an for all and we keep creating this inconvenience for ourselves by people who sit in Accra and do not understand the ramifications of these decisions they make.

with regards to the other ‘renovations’ works, is it not possible to rather get to work when the roads are less busy to traffic so that workers can work round the clock to fix whatever has to be fixed instead of deciding to work at peak times of traffic?

i would have calculated this and said that all this sitting in traffic translates into man hours wasted but then i remember we are in Ghana and man hours do not really count. we sit in our offices and pretend to be working and wait for our salaries at the end of the month not guilt laden that we have nothing to show as output for the period. what is it therefore if we sit in traffic for a few hours when we do not get home to that comforting warmth at home and even that the electricity company have a say in it.

what a country!

i think it is high time the citizenry demand accountability radically and not let some bureaucrats determine how uncomfortable we get without taking into consideration how we feel whilst lining his pockets with our tax money and the freebies we offer them in the ‘responsible’ positions we have assigned them.

but this also starts from ourselves as it behoves on us to account to ourselves as citizens of this great nation. as John Kenned put it, we should be asking what can we for the nation instead of what the nation can do for us.

the president in his inaugural speech, as reiterated in his May Day speech, has asked Ghanaian not to be aloof but to do our best in participating in national development. this participation is not from the sidelines but then as national patriots it is a conscious effort of the individual to start with himself and then others can tag along. he was only saying what i have always said that it takes only you to start a patriotic revolution.

let the citizens demand accountablity from our elected leaders and civil servants.

let us arise and build a better ghana

like i always say it begins with YOU!

 

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