Manyakrobo — Work on the 99-kilometre Tema-Mpakadan railway line is expected to be completed in June 2020, the Minister of Railway Development, Mr Joe Ghartey, has assured.
Although the project was redesigned to accommodate few changes, he said, the project which was at a cost of US$230 million was currently 60 per cent complete.
The project begins from Tema through Afienya, North Tongu District in the Volta Region, Manya Krobo and terminates at Mpakadan, a few kilometres away from Akosombo.
Speaking in a meeting with Nene Sakite II, Konor of Manya Krobo and other chiefs of the area here at Manya Krobo in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality, Mr Ghartey said he was confident the siting of the railway line in the area would boost trade and other economic activities.
The meeting was to consult with the traditional leaders on the project and seek their support for its successful completion.
Mr Ghartey explained that the redesigning of the project which involved relocating the rail head from Akosombo to Mpakadan became necessary following assessment of the effects of construction works on the Akosombo dam.
According to him, blasting of rocks and other heavy activities at the Akosombo port which is 60 metres close to the Akosombo dam could pose a great risk to the safety of the dam hence the need to move the port to Mpakadan.
Additionally, Mr Ghartey explained that risk of threats of terrorism on the dam due to the huge number of passengers expected at Akosombo via rail transportation informed the decision for the relocation of the port from Akosombo.
The project, he noted, was part of the Ghana-Burkina Faso railway line which would pass through the Volta and Northern Regions to connect the two countries.
The Railway Development Minister stated that feasibility studies were presently being done on the Ghana-Burkina Faso railway line and would be completed in November this year.
Procurement processes, the Minister said, has begun already with about four companies expressing interest adding that work on the project was likely to commence in the second quarter of next year.
Nene Sakite II assured of his support for the project's success saying "it presents a good means of transportation which will enhance trade and commerce activities in the area and the country as a whole."
He urged the Minister and the government to consider payment of compensation for the use of the land which stretches to about 67 km.
He further called on the Ghana Railway Development Authority to develop a corporate social responsibility initiative which was targeted at addressing some of the challenges in the area.