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Road contractors besiege ministry over unpaid arrears

Scores of road contractors on Wednesday besieged the Ministry of Roads and Highways to demand payment for work done.

The contractors said they have not been paid since 2016.

The contractors after going to the Ministry last week to demand a meeting with the Minister, Kwesi Amoako-Atta, were instructed to return this week due to the absence of the sector minister.

Clad in red with armbands, the leaders of the protesting contractors who picketed the Ministry today were invited into a meeting with the minister.

Some members of the group said they were hopeful of a positive outcome of the meeting.

One of the aggrieved contractors told Citi News that claims by the Minister that they have been paying them are false.

“Last week we were here but the Minister was not around, they asked us to come today. Fortunately, we thought he would be around so we have a meeting with him. He has been lying that he has been paying contractors. Since 2016, the first payment, which is the NDC loan from UBA, is the money they used. Since this government took over, they have not paid us a pesewa,” he said.

Another protester said, “we are here to express our view that whatever the minister wants to tell us, we are here to listen to him. The leaders are meeting now and we are waiting to see the outcome.

A third protester who spoke to Citi News lamented that although engineers had approved the work they had done, they are yet to receive the payment from government after investing their personal funds to complete the various projects.

“We need our money because we used our personal money and we did the work engineers went to the site and certified the certificate.”

The sector minister while speaking at a workshop organized by the Ministry of Roads and Highways at Ejisu in the Ashanti region in May 2019 appealed to road contractors owed by the government to continue working with government and assured them of paying their monies soon.

“Since coming to office, the government of President Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo Addo has paid over 4 billion Ghana cedis and the evidence is clear for anybody who cares to know. We want to assure all contractors in this country that the government will like to announce that the president [has] directed the Minister of Finance to give one billion United State dollars to my sector to make payment of all outstanding and delayed road payment,” he said.

|Citi Newsroom

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