HomeGeneral NewsGov’t refutes claims reconstruction of AICC has been scuttled

Gov’t refutes claims reconstruction of AICC has been scuttled

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The government has refuted claims by Member of Parliament for North Tongu, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwah, that its plans to reconstruct the Accra International Conference Centre has been scuttled.

According to the government, the plans are far advanced and the reconstruction of the edifice will come off as panned.

The government’s reaction follows a Facebook post made by Mr Ablakwah who doubles as the Ranking Member for the Parliamentary Select Committee on Foreign Affairs purporting that NDC MPs, both at the Foreign Affairs Committee and plenary, have scuttled the project which is estimated to cost the country GHS1.3 billion.

Per the post, parliament rejected the government’s proposed reconstruction of AICC, thereby putting the project in jeopardy.

But, speaking to Adom News, Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Kwaku Ampratwum Sarpong debunked Ablakwah’s claim and described it as false and misleading.

He explained that the project is on course contrary to what Mr Okudzeto Ablakwa published on his Facebook wall.

He emphasized that Parliament has approved the Ministry of Foreign Affairs budget estimates and allocation and also the outlook for 2023 which includes plans to demolish and rebuild the AICC after going through the legally required processes.

“In June 2020, Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs which was then led by Hon. Frank Annoh Dompreh, myself, as Vice Chairman, Okudzeto Ablakwa as a Ranking Member, Hon. Okoh Vanderpuje as Deputy Ranking Member and the rest of the Committee Members visited and inspected the Accra International Conference Centre to familiarize ourselves with the structural integrity challenges of the edifice. Upon the inspection, the committee agreed with the advice and report of the Team of Engineers and Construction Professionals led by Ing. Mark Addo of the Ghana Institute of Engineers that the best option was to demolish the edifice and rebuild it. The Engineering report stated that 30% of the concrete had peeled off and that if there was a severe buckle, the building would collapse, and, therefore, it was imperative that the building would be pulled down and be rebuilt,” he said.

The MP of Mampong continued that after the inspection, the Deputy Ranking Member, Okoh Vanderpuje who spoke at the time on behalf of the Committee agreed strongly with the engineer’s report and recommendations for the demolition and reconstruction of the building.

Hon. Ampratwum pointed out that, copies of the report were made available to every Committee Member including Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Okoh Vanderpuje.

He further stated that at their recent deliberations on the 2023 budget estimates for the Ministry, the Committee once again agreed with the report and professional advice from the same team of Engineers and Construction Professionals that the best option still remains a demolition and rebuilding of the edifice.

“It is strange that today, the same Committee Members who took part in this exercise and agreed with the recommendations as contained in the report are creating the impression that they have never come into contact with this very report. The general public is, therefore, entreated to ignore the claim of Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa as the facts as spelt out are not in sync with his position.

He assured Ghanaians that AICC will be rebuilt per the arrangements with the investor, Suma Turizm Yatirimciligi A.S of Turkey since a delay in same may cause cataclysmic consequences to Ghanaians who patronize the edifice.

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