Minister for Roads and Highways has disclosed there is a conspiracy to destroy road and bridge infrastructure of the country by some unscrupulous persons.
According to him, bolts and nuts holding the joints of bridges and other road infrastructure are being surreptitiously removed and endangering the lives of motorists.
Mr. Kwasi Amoako-Atta disclosed this during question time in Parliament on Tuesday.
He was in the House to respond to a number of questions from members who wanted to know when some roads in there constituencies would be completed.
Member for Dadekotopon, Rita Odoley Sowah, raised concern about bolts and nuts coming off the bridge on the Kpeshie Lagoon and posing danger to users of the road and called for the situation to be addressed.
The Minister confirmed the phenomenon and indicated that the Ministry has been bedeviled with this unusual destruction not only with the Kpeshie bridge but across the country.
He lamented that unscrupulous and indisciplined persons and criminals are going around the country and dismembering parts of bridges, especially the bolts and nuts.
He said, “I wish to call on the security agencies and indeed all of us to be vigilant to see if we can deal with this problem.”
“Last year at Garo Tempane, a long span strong bridge collapsed when an articulator truck went on it. One of the best strong bridges in our country and not because it was weak.”
“I believe the previous night some people went under the bridge and loosened some of the bolts and nuts and weakening the infrastructure overnight and causing it to cave in when the heavy vehicle tried to pass over it.”
According to the Minister, a similar situation occurred last year on the Adomi Bridge when some of the bolts and nuts were stolen.
He said, “Such an important major bridge. Same thing happened but we were lucky it was detected on time. We had to stop vehicles going on the bridge, which caused a major holdup. We had to rush our mobile bridge maintenance team there to refix the stolen bolts and nuts and it took more than five hours.
“Nobody can imagine the inconvenience that was caused to the motoring public,” he added.
Mr. Amoako-Atta appealed to the Speaker to get the House to debate the problem of indscipline on roads in the country.
Speaking on the Kpeshie Lagoon Beach Road Bridge, the Minster gave the assurance the current state is not posing any danger to traffic as a by-pass bridge has been constructed and in use.
Maintenance of the Bridge, he said, was a variation to an ongoing project titled “Repair to damaged Bridge in Greater Accra Metropolis Area – Kpeshie South Bridge”.
He indicated that the project was awarded on 13″ September, 2012 for completion on 30 September, 2015 which has since elapsed.
He stated that the project commenced on 1st February, 2013. However, the Contractor raised the last Certificate for payment on 31st March, 2015 and has since abandoned the site.
The previous contract, he said, has been determined and the outstanding works have been repackaged for execution as part of an ongoing contract titled “La Beach Road Completion Project, Phase 1 (Tema Road: Independence Arch to Nungua Barrier — 16km).”