Mr Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, Minister of Transport has given the assurance that the Keta Port Project is in progress and that actual infrastructural development would begin next year.
He said, for now, a feasibility study to determine the appropriate infrastructure for the port was been undertaken by a German consultant which report could be ready by the first quarter of next year.
The Minister made this known at the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament when he availed himself to assist three agencies, namely, Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority, Ghana Maritime Authority, and the Ghana Technical Training Centre to answer questions on their 2015 Audit Report.
The Keta Port Project question was asked as a Public Interest question by Richard Quarshigah, Member of Parliament for the Keta Constituency, whose concern was based on the fact that, though the port was at teething stage, a director has been appointed by the President to manage its affairs.
However, the question, agitating the mind of the Member of Parliament who is also a member of the Committee was doused by the Minister with the explanation that since the construction of a port was not an event but a process, the President saw it necessary to appoint a director who would be at a pivotal point to coordinate all the processes leading to its implementation.
He said some of the processes included acquisition of land for the project, getting the necessary Executive Instrument to take possession of the land and doing surveying to co-ordinate the area properly.
Mr Asiamah said all that have been done to ensure that the project did not affect the coastal area and its environs, adding that the government was currently looking for an investor to champion it as a Public-Private Partnership project.
When James Avedzi, the Chairman of the Committee also sought to pick the Minister’s thought on legalisation of commercial motorcycles by former President Mahama who is currently the flagbearer of the opposition National Democratic Congress as another Public Interest question, the Minister contended that he was baffled by the stance of the former President as it was during his tenure in 2012, a Legislative Instrument was laid before Parliament to ban the commercialisation of motorcycles, popularly known as Okada.
Mr Asiamah said he would not be able to determine what has informed any decision to the contrary by the former President now.
However, that was inconclusive as the issue of the law being introduced to Parliament before former President Mahama took office as Mr Afedzi at that point said, “I know your position on the question, so you are discharged.”
BY LAWRENCE MARKWEI