Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Benito Owusu-Bio, has expressed the ministry’s commitment to completing the temporary settlement for residents of Appiate, who were displaced following an explosion in the community.
Mr Owusu-Bio assured residents that the reconstruction team will stick to the deadline of May 1 in order to transition the victims from the camp tents to the temporary buildings. The Deputy Lands Minister made this revelation today, April 13, 2022, on a working visit to Appiate to ascertain the impact of the recent heavy downpour at the site and also to inspect the Future Global Resources (FGR) buildings which are being refurbished.
Addressing the media, Mr Owusu-Bio indicated that some thirty-one buildings have been refurbished with wood frames and some with roofs. With this, he noted that he is convinced works on the buildings will be completed in the next couple of weeks.
“My team and I foresaw this happening and planned ahead, that’s why we have been in talks with FGR on these buildings and today, as we’ve witnessed, roofing has commenced and we will be sure to stick to the May 1st time frame to transition the people to the temporary structures”.Benito Owusu-Bio
Consequently, Mr Owusu-Bio expressed that per a head count at the camp, the 31 buildings will be able to house up to 110 family units with each family at the camp acquiring a room of their own, averagely four individuals per family. He further remarked that per the head count, everyone at the camp will be housed in the 31 buildings, but “we will add more rooms if the need arises to ensure that everyone has a safe place of abode”.
Resettlement of Appiate residents
Interacting with the displaced victims, Mr Owusu-Bio, who doubles as the Chairman of the Appiate Reconstruction Implementation Committee, reaffirmed government’s commitment to move them to the temporary structures. He highlighted that the President Akufo-Addo led government has put in place all necessary measures to accommodate them on the 1st of May.
As part of the working visit, the Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority (LUPSA) presented the local plan of the Model Community to the Municipal Assembly which was adopted for implementation, after an extensive presentation by Mr. Mohammed Alhassan Damba, the Director for Research Monitoring of LUPSA.
Prior to this, the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) replaced tents destroyed by the rains in Appiate to ensure the provision of warmth for them. Remarking on the devastation, Mr Owusu-Bio, indicated that his team will begin roofing some temporary structures on Wednesday, April 11, 2022.
“The tents we initially set up for them were temporary measures to support them, but we are also aware that the rainy season will soon set in. Thus, since February, we have been working around the clock to provide temporary accommodation for them”.Benito Owusu-Bio
To expedite the resettlement process, the Deputy Lands Minister emphasized that a “mining company next door”, has some uncompleted structures earmarked for one of their resettlement programmes. He explained that his team following an interaction with FGR agreed to give out the structures to the ministry to be completed as a temporary resettlement plan.