Five contractors have moved to the site at Appiatse in the Prestea Huni-Valley Municipality of the Western Region to commence the reconstruction of the Appiatse Community, razed by an explosion on January 20.
Mr Benito Owusu-Bio, a Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources and Chairman of the Appiatse Reconstruction Implementation Team, who announced this on Friday, said after a series of administrative processes, it had secured approval from the Public Procurement Authority to allow five contractors to commence work on the site.
He said the five contractors had moved to the site and had begun work to restore the livelihoods of the residents of Appiatse to normalcy.
The contractors include Fineness Elevation Limited, Savanna Grande Company Limited, Builders Company Limited, MegaTech Plus Engineering Solutions Limited, MackSams Limited and Mc Castro Company Limited.
A total of 968 residents made up of 577 adults and 391 children were displaced.
The Appiatse Reconstruction Implementation Committee Team has indicated that it would construct a total of 540 housing units.
The structures comprise 124 two-bedroom to seven-bedroom housing units at the site that witnessed the explosion and 416 at the fringe communities with toilet and kitchen facilities.
These will occupy a space of 205.64 acres of land but work will start on 124 houses at the explosion site for the first phase.
In addition, 416 houses are earmarked to be built on the fringe communities for the second phase where the explosion was not that severe.
The housing plan made provision for transportation terminals, clinics, schools, churches, mosques, memorial centre, new cemetery, stores along the highway and expansion of roads.
Some 12.5 kilometres town roads and drainage systems will also be built.
The core area which was the planned site for the housing facilities would be developed first and all other facilities, which were not destroyed by the explosion on January 20, will be rehabilitated in addition to the development of new ones.
The construction works will take into consideration ecological needs of the community, environmental sustainability, ventilation, climate-friendly energy sources and proper waste management practices.
As part of his working visit to the community to familiarise himself with the progress of work, Mr Owusu-Bio engaged the contractors on site and urged them to beef up security to ensure the safety of their workers.
He asked the contractors to ensure the workers strictly complied with the safety protocols.
“For instance, everybody must be in a helmet, make sure they are in their safety boots and those who failed to comply should be queried to deter others,” the Deputy Minister stated.
He also tasked the contractors to ensure proper and clear demarcation of the plots with caution tapes to prevent potential accidents.
They should also erect small signboards on their lots to avert potential clashing of contractors and ensure easy identification.
On sanitation on site, Mr Owusu-Bio asked the contractors to provide potable water, toilet facilities and other basic amenities to avoid delays and complaints.
Mr Owusu-Bio reiterated the government’s commitment to building a green and model community by employing a domestic brick system for the structures.