The President of the Ghana Road Contractors Association of Ghana, John Afful, says most road projects in the country have stalled due to the non-payment of funds for already executed projects.
Ghanaians over the last few months have complained bitterly over the deteriorating nature of most roads in the country and some road projects which have been abandoned.
Despite some road projects progressing smoothly, several other roads have not received any facelift in the last few years, despite the government declaring 2021 as the year of roads.
Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show on Tuesday, November 22, Mr Afful said the failure of the Ministry of Roads and Highways to pay contractors has saddled them with huge debts.
“Most road projects have stalled, and the contractors are not on-site, mainly because of non-payment of previous work done. If you go to the Road Fund of the Ministry of Roads and Highways, you will notice that there are huge arrears not paid to the contractors from as far back as 2016,” Mr Afful told sit-in host Nathan Quao.
He added, “It is something that is very worrisome that we are chasing, so when people go around, and they find out the projects are not being done, it is mainly because the projects are not being paid for, and it has affected all contractors in the country, and they have huge debts to pay.”
But the head of Public Relations at the Ministry of Roads and Highways, Ahmed Yartey, in a reaction said claims that all Government of Ghana-funded projects have stalled are not entirely factual.
According to him, some GoG-funded projects are progressing smoothly, however, due to inflation and increasing cost of living some projects have stalled.
“I can also say that about 95 percent of the asphalt overlay you see around are GoG-funded projects and not foreign-funded projects.”
Mr Yartey also admitted that some contractors are struggling with non-payment of already executed projects, but added that the government is putting in place measures to pay the contractors.
“Some local contractors are struggling, I will not say it is not a fact some are going through it…prices have gone up, prices of bitumen are up and all those things affect road construction and the capital of contractors.”