The National Engineering Coordination Team (NECT) has advised persons who have built on road reservations to remove their properties or face the full force of the law.
The National Chairman of NECT, Dr Kenneth Ashigbey, specifically mentioned the recent development on the Ayi-Mensah to Akuapem road, where people continue to build close to the road along the Akuapim ridge, saying such structures would soon be demolished as they pose a serious risk to drivers, other road users, and the residents themselves.
He made the statement at a stakeholder meeting in Koforidua where MDCEs, Physical Planning Officers, Building Inspectors, Heads of Departments, Executives of the Regional Engineering Co-ordinating Team, National Petroleum Authority, Agencies and Institutions on Land Use and Spatial Planning gathered to discuss and sensitize attendees on the need and urgency of acting quickly to address the issue of building at unauthorized places and reservation in the area.
Dr Ashigbey urged the Regional Engineering Coordinating Team (RECT) to work hard to get rid of such structures and to sustain the call to prevent their occurrence in the future, knowing that posterity would not be kind to them if they fail.
He said rapid urbanization is fast becoming a development challenge in the management of Urban Settlements in Ghana, therefore, there was the need to call for urgent measures to be put in place for effective land use and spatial plans to guide physical development.
The Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Seth Kwame Acheampong, expressed optimism that the results of the stakeholder engagement, combined with the execution of the plans already approved at the Assemblies, could set the bar for success in the region and serve as a model for the development of other regions in Ghana.
He urged stakeholders to ready themselves to meet the eminent challenges posed by rapid urbanization, adding that the Eastern Region with its proximity to Accra, the national capital, has become the target for estate developers and he called for urgent measures to be put in place for effective land use and spatial plans to guide physical development.
He gave the stakeholders the assurance that the Eastern Regional Coordinating Council would provide the team and MDAs in the area with all the support they need to make things right.
Speaking to the media, Mr Patrick Okoto, the Regional Director of the Ghana Highways Authority, said the development of the core and periphery of the road reservation along the Akuapim Roads without reference to planning regulations, which resulted in urban growth, slum and squatter settlements, and the indiscriminate placement of temporary structures were serious concerns.
The Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) are required by Sections 83 and 34 of the Land Use and Spatial Planning Act, 2016 (Act 925) to carry out spatial planning functions through efficient land use planning and management to promote sustainable development of human settlement, the wise use of land, and overall socio-economic development of the Districts.
Dzifa Hukporti, ISD
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