Parliamentary Commitee To Probe Adjei kojo Demolition

DOE ADJAHO (1)The Speaker, of Parliament Mr Edward Doe Adjaho, has constituted a special committee to conduct fresh investigations into the demolition, carried out by the Tema Development Corporation (TDC) at Adjei Kodjo in the Tema Metropolis, a fortnight ago.

Although the Committee on Works and Housing, last Monday, began inquiry into the matter, the Speaker directed the new committee to take over investigation and submit its report in a month’s time.

The committee is made up of members of the Constitutional and Legal Committee, the Works and Housing Committee, the Lands and Natural Resource Committee, of Parliament, as well as former ministers of Water Resource Works and Housing, who are currently Members of Parliament (MPs).

Mr. Adjaho said the MPs felt strongly about the issue and, therefore, urged the committee to look into all the legal and social aspects of the demolition, to enable the House to take a position on the matter.

The Speaker’s initiative followed contributions of MPs to a statement made by the MP for Tema West, Mrs. Irene Naa Torshie Addo, on the exercise, yesterday in the House.
She expressed worry about the manner in which the exercise was carried out, describing it as “uncivil” and “inhumane”, and said that it should never be repeated anywhere in the country. Other MPs joined her in condemning the action by TDC

Mrs. Addo, who has sworn to use all legal means available to secure justice for the more than 2000 residents, who displaced as a result of the exercise, told journalists after yesterday’s sitting that she would put her decision to challenge the exercise in court on hold, once Parliament has officially taken up the matter.

Mrs Addo said: “When a demolition exercise has to be resorted to, there are steps that need to be followed, such as performing asbestos abatement, removing hazardous or regulated materials, obtaining necessary permits, submitting necessary notifications, disconnecting utilities, rodent baiting, and development of site-specific safety and work plans”.

She said “when these steps are not properly taken as has been in the case of TDC at Adjei Kojo, the act of demolition becomes inhuman and even irresponsible.

Mrs. Addo said the effects of the exercise could not be quantified financially because it did not only displace people but also shattered the dreams and aspirations of their children.

“The children of the victims went to school full of the desire of patriotism for their country and came back shattered, confused and afraid of their future,” she said.

Mrs Addo said victims of the exercise now sleep in the open and are exposed to mosquitoes, and snakes while food, water and shelter had become a burden for families, which hitherto, were able to fend for themselves without support from the state. By Yaw Kyei

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