Stop construction on Bulgaria Embassy’s property – Lands C’ssion

The Lands Commission has taken steps to stop the construction of a structure on the land previously occupied by the Bulgarian Embassy here in Accra. 

In an order dated March 15, 2020 and posted on the entrance of the facility located at plot No.2 East Cantonments, Accra, the Commission ordered that the development ceased forthwith. 

“It has been observed that this structure/development is being altered on the land belonging to the Bulgarian Embassy by virtue of sublease from Theophilus K. Leighton (now deceased) dated 2nd August 1983 to a term of 50 years commencing on 1st July 1983 and was set to expire 30th June 2033. 

“You are hereby notified that the assignment in favour of Dr Yaw Adu-Ampomah should be for the reversion of the 40 years commencing 1st July 2033 of the 99 years grant to Mr Leighton by the Government. 

“The Lands Commission intends invoking the options prescribed under the Lands Act (Act 1036) if you donot stop work immediately,” the order seen by the Ghanaian Times and signed by Gifty Osei, a Senior Land Administration Officer for the Regional Lands Officer, said. 

The ‘Stop work’ order comes on the back of calls by the Minority in Parliament for a public parliamentary hearing into the alleged demolition by armed men. 

In the view of the caucus, if the cause of the alleged demolition and persons behind were not established and punished, it could spark a diplomatic row between Ghana and Bulgaria.

In a Facebook post, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, the Ranking Member on the Foreign Affairs Committee, said the “unresponsive” nature of Ghana’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration to questions from the Bulgarians even after a delegation was sent to Ghana is regrettable. 

Describing the alleged demolition as “shocking, exceedingly lawless, provocative and mafia-style operation,” the North Tongu Member of Parliament (MP) said persons who went to demolish the Embassy assaulted the Honorary Consul, MrNicolaas C.M. van Staalduinen, in his effort to restrain them in the process. 

“Valuables including generators, computers, printers, refrigerators, archival documents which represent a treasure trove of deep historical bonds and a stash of vital diplomatic exchanges were not spared by the marauding encroachers.

“The perpetrators are now building their own structure with the speed of light, at day and night, to conclude their nefarious mission. This aggressively mindless attack is usually considered a declaration of war,” Mr Ablakwa stated. 

According to MrAblakwa, the demolition amounts to a “grotesque” violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, 1961 which provides that the premises of a mission shall be inviolable and that the host nation must take steps to protect the premises of a mission against any intrusion or damage. 

Interacting with the media on the demolition, Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu said the demolition could sever ties between Ghana and the Eastern European country. 

As a caucus, the Minority Leader said they were disappointed taking into consideration portfolios the President has held in the past and present. 

“We just do not want to believe that all this is happening under Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, a former Foreign Minister and a former Attorney General and you can’t respect the Vienna Convention on diplomacy? We are disappointed,” Mr Iddrisu, NDC MP for Tamale South, said. 


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