A 65 million Euro loan facility has been approved by the Parliament of Ghana for the construction and rehabilitation of three bridges.
The bridges are the Ankobra Bridge over the Ankobra River, Iture Bridge which connects Cape Coast and Elmina and the Dikpe Bridge on the Black Volta between Lawra and Dikpe.
Anthony Karbo, Deputy Minister for Roads, told Joy News that the roads and bridges will bring relief to residents in the enclave.
“Ankobra and Iture bridges in the Western and Central Regions are already existing bridges which have been exposed to the weather and actually have outlived their usefulness and are weak,” Karbo said. “And if you look at the economic activity going on between Central Region and Western Region especially with oil and logging and a lot of huge trucks that ply that road, there is the need for us to change those bridges or else we could just be walking into imminent danger.”
In the case of the Dikpe Bridge, Karbo indicated it will go a long way to strengthen the trade relations Ghana has with Burkina Faso in the north of Ghana and will come as a relief to traders who have had to undertake the perilous crossing of the river by canoes.
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“There’s currently no bridge across the Black Volta and Dikpe is a community within the Lawra Municipality and it is divided by the Black Volta which divides Ghana and Burkina Faso. And there has been a lot of canoe trade, movement of people through the water, unapproved routes and it has actually hindered economic activity,” he explained. “For many many years, I think over 40 years now, the people have been yearning for this bridge to be constructed so that it could improve economic activity between Ghana and Burkina Faso because indeed it is the shortest route to Burkina Faso not through Hamile but now through Bobo-Dioulasso.
Karbo added: “Of course you’ll have to detour off Lawra through Dikpe and to Bobo-Dioulasso and so it is a major game-changer and for me, this is one of the things the President had talked about in 2016 and he was very clear that he was going to deal with that particular bridge so that we can open trade between the two countries”.
Anthony Karbo stated further that since the government started engaging the Burkinabe officials on the said bridge, there have been no objections, therefore, work would begin as soon as possible.