The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor has assured the people of Appiatse that the modern, green and sustainable community Government intends to build will be based on equity, fairness, and justice.
The Minister said this when he paid another working visit to Appiatse together with the Appiatse Reconstruction Implementation Committee on Monday, 21st February 2022.
The visit was to, among other things, see how the victims of the incident were fairing, update them on the government’s roadmap to reconstruct the township, and inspect some temporary structures earmarked to house the displaced people of Appiatse before the rain sets in.
Speaking at a durbar of Chiefs and people of Appiatse, the Minister disclosed that some uncompleted structures constructed by FGR, a private mining company operating in the region, to resettle the people of Dumase, will be completed and furnished to temporarily house the people of Appiatse before the rains set in.
He said, “these tents cannot protect you from the rains so in the interim we have agreed with FGR to have you move into their building while we settle on plans to begin the third phase and that is to rebuild the community itself.”
Jinapor assured the people that work on these uncompleted structures will begin as soon as possible with the roofing and fixing of doors and windows, adding that all the monies accumulated from the Appiatse Support Fund will be put to judicious use while ensuring transparency and accountability.
“We will ensure that all the monies being donated into the Fund are put to judicious use. I assure you that the community will be built on equity, fairness, and justice, and all who owned houses, Lands, and shops will all have it restored to them and every single penny will be accounted for.”
“And for the New Appiatse, we will ensure that we restore the community as practical as possible. We want to maintain the character of the place so that you can easily go back to your way of life, farming, selling among others”
He stressed that the Dumase temporary settlement will not be a permanent place for the people and therefore warned that no one should claim ownership of the settlement but rather move peacefully to the new township after completion.
Mr Jinapor said a block factory will be set up as a matter of urgency to mould blocks out of some 6000 bags of cement that have been donated for the rebuilding of the town.
He charged the Member of Parliament, Municipal Chief Executive, and the Assemblyman for the area to man the factory and ensure that cement is used purposely for the moulding of these blocks.
He also called on the people, particularly the youth, to do the little they can to cooperate and support the Ministry and government with works on the uncompleted structures and the main project yet to be embarked on.
Admonishing them, the Minister said, in as many people all over Ghana and abroad are donating to build the community, the people must also help in any way they can.
“We are not asking for money from you and we are not going to take any, what we expect from you is your cooperation and support by joining in the communal labour, helping to mould the blocks to be used for your own buildings even without expecting monetary benefits”
He thanked Ghanaians for all the support through donations so far and called for more from friends of Ghana and the diaspora for the reconstruction of the Green and Sustainable community.
The Minister during the visit also inspected the Dumase temporary structures as well as the reconstruction of the road which was affected by the explosion.
During the inspection tour, Benito Owusu-Bio, the Chairman of the Appiatse Reconstruction Implementation Committee and Deputy Lands and Natural Resources Minister briefed the Minister saying, per the inventory taken, the Dumase settlement will be able to house all the 800 displaced persons with about 4 people in each room.
He assured that work on the temporary structures will begin as early as Monday, 28th February 2022, with standard roofing and furnishing although temporary.
He disclosed that companies like Tropical Cables, the Forestry Commission among others have promised to provide needed logistics for free.
The Chief of Appiatse, Nana Bremebi expressed his appreciation to Government and the Ministry for all the efforts towards the rebuilding of Appiatse while urging his people to support the project and remain patient as government zooms into the third phase of the project.
At the durbar held in honour of the Minister and his entourage, the Reconstruction Implementation Committee gave a presentation to the people of Appiatse, displaying a scenario of the final outlook of the community after completion.
The presentation detailed where the markets, community centres, schools, and personal settlements will be.