Gov’t Deception Exposed In Sky Train Scam

-After Phantom Contract Signing and Three-Year No Show

The promise made by the Akufo-Addo government in 2018 to build sky trains in Ghana was purely meant as the proverbial “Castles in the air” to tickle the ears of Ghanaians, latest events have revealed. 

Railways Development Minister, John Peter Amewu, has confessed the promise is impossible to fulfill, saying: “The sky train that we are talking about is the one that is going to run on columns in the sky like the ones you see in Dubai but no agreement has been signed. It is not possible to be done now. I don’t see any sky train being done in the next 3 to 4 years”, Amewu told Accra-based Citi TV.

He hits it home bolts and nuts: “There is not going to be any Sky train in the country. It is not possible.”

The mind-shattering admission by Peter Amewu is such a blatant contradiction from the events of November 2018, when President Akufo-Addo had led an entourage to South Africa to sign an MoU with South African group, Africa Investment (Ai) SkyTrain Consortium, for the construction of the so-called Accra Sky Train Project.

Then Minister for Railways Development, Joe Ghartey, had signed the agreement for Ghana on the sidelines of the Africa Investment Forum in Johannesburg.

Joe Ghartey had claimed that the Sky Train Project was the solution to the ever-increasing road traffic congestion in Accra.

 “There is confidence in the project. The promoters (Ai SkyTrain Consortium) are very serious, and that is why we invited the President, himself, to witness the signing. This should assure the investors that Government is solidly behind it. The economics of this project are also good. We are very excited about the prospects,” Mr. Ghartey said at the time.

“Today, we have signed an MoU, which will last nine months, where they (Ai SkyTrain Consortium) can do their feasibility into detail. After which we have given ourselves 45 days to take our concessionary agreements for approval by Cabinet and also by Parliament. By January 2020, we should start the construction of the project,” Mr. Ghartey added.

On the part of the South Africans, their deputy Minister for Transport at the time, Sindisiwe Lydia Chikunga, had graced the signing ceremony and expressed excitement over the agreement to finish the Accra Sky Train project by 2020.

President Akufo-Addo would then take the stage and wax lyrical about the job opportunities and all-important fitments that the project was bringing Ghana.

However, after the colorful ceremony, nothing happened, with Amewu justifying the disappointment by claiming railway projects are just too expensive. 

 “Rail construction takes a lot of time and it is also capital intensive. A kilometre of a railway line is about four to five times the cost of building a concrete infrastructure in terms of building an asphaltic road,” Amewu said.

He added, “So, considering the fiscal space that we have in the country, facilities to absorb it is becoming problematic for the government and you know our current debt to GDP which is in excess of 70%.”

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