Minister for Railways Development and Member for Essikado Constituency in the Western Region Hon. Joe Ghartey, has assured residents of Accra, Nsawam and its neighbouring towns of an improved railway transport service, after the completion of rehabilitation works on the Accra-Nsawam passenger and light rail service before Christmas this year.
Answering a question by the Member for Nsawam-Adoagyiri, Hon. Frank Annoh Dompreh, on the Ministry’s bid to revamp the Accra-Naswam railway line, Hon. Ghartey pointed out that the rehabilitation could have been completed earlier but there were unforeseen circumstances, which led to the extension of the contract to December, 2018.
Hon. Annoh Dompreh also wanted to know from the Minister, what works had been done on the Eastern Railway line and the challenges the Ministry had face.
He explained that the ministry had difficulty in the acquisition of treated wooden sleepers for the construction of the rail gauges.
“The acceptable quality of treated sleepers could not be obtained in Ghana. An offer from the United States of America also proved unsustainable. Suitably treated wooden sleepers were identified in China and the order has been placed for the sleepers to be delivered by August 2018”. He disclosed.
Informing the house on the challenges in the railway sector, he again added that some sections of the railway at the Accra Central Station and the Graphic Road section of the line have completely deteriorated due to human activities.
Stating the challenge on the floor of the house, Hon. Ghartey revealed that the old bridges and culverts will be replaced, where an extensive drainage system will be constructed.
“The ballast will be replaced and all rotten sleepers will also be changed. The formation will be resorted where it has been destroyed.
The existing stations will also be rehabilitated under this rehabilitation programme”. He reiterated.
In explaining further the importance of the railway line, the Minister also informed the house that the rehabilitation programme has contributed to the revival of the Ghana Railway Company Limited.
He concluded that the total workforce from Accra to Nsawam is 320, comprising of 305 permanent way workers and 15 engineer supervisors.