A1radioonline.com can independently confirm claims that Covid-19 affected the construction of an airport in Upper East Region are not entirely accurate.
The Minister designate for Transport, Kwaku Ofori Asiamah made a claim before the vetting committee of Parliament that but for Covid-19, construction of an airport for the Upper East Region would have begun in 2020.
“This matter has been brought to my attention and I found out that we had some challenges because of the Covid-19 situation. But Minister for Finance has assured me that, all things being equal, he will make sure that this year, he will find funding for the Upper East airport project. be rest assured that, all things being equal, we will start the project this year”.he claimed.
Facts are that, as at 2020, there was no budgetary allocation by government for this project in the Upper East Region.
Also , a recommended site for the project was not settled because of the controversies surrounding it.
It will be recalled that, a proposed site for the construction of an airport at Sumbrungu in the Upper East Region was reportedly abandoned under former sector Minister for Aviation ,Cecilia Dapaah .
The reasons given earlier were that, the old proposed site which has been in existence for over 20 years was not technically suitable.
A scouting for a new site at Sherigu an adjourned community to Sumbrungu was identified for consideration.
However, this created a disagreement among the two communities which demonstrations were staged.
Another challenge came up when Joseph Kofi Adda was reassigned to head that ministry where attempts were made to divert the project to the disputed Paga airstrip. The challenge has been that,the Paga airstrip interfere into the airspace of Burkina Faso.
This occasioned the commissioning of a committee to investigate into concerns raised and recommend. The committee did not at the end of 2020 make any recommendation for the project.
This has therefore made it ridiculous for the Minister designate for Transport , Kwaku Ofori Asiamah to claim that Covid-19 affected the construction of the airport in Upper East Region.