A group calling itself the Ghana First contractors have reiterated their appeal for the government to pay them monies due them for the construction of toilet facilities across the country.
The contractors who were recruited by the Ghana First Company to undertake the construction of toilet facilities say they have so far completed about 1,800 of the facilities, but they are yet to receive payment nearly three years after their work.
The spokesperson of the group, Yaw Tawiah Dickson in an interview on Eyewitness News said the owed contractors have had to deal with the banks they borrowed monies from to undertake the projects, leaving many of them in serious financial difficulties, with others losing their lives as a result.
“We are asking the government that it has been about 2 years, we want them to come and pay the contractors so that they can also pay the loans they took from banks… We want to appeal to President Akufo-Addo that our contractors are in a bad situation because where we are now, we are losing lives, we are losing our properties,” he said.
According to Tawiah Dickson, they are owed at least GH¢ 92 million.
“We’ve done almost 1,800 toilet facilities across the whole country. As we speak, government has been adamant on this issue. We have gone to Ghana First, trying to have a dialogue with them so that at least we get money for our contractors, we haven’t been able to receive a penny. Ghana First has given us an interim certificate certified by the CEO… We are talking about GH¢ 92 million per the certified certificate,” he said.
He added that the contractors are frustrated as all efforts to reach the various stakeholders to get their monies paid have proven futile.
He said the group has petitioned the Speaker of Parliament and the Council of State on the matter but nothing has come out of it, adding that they want the government to at least dialogue with them to agree on timelines for payment.
“We’ve gone to the Council of State, Speaker of Parliament and a whole lot of people, but we have not received any result from it. We are trying to get to the government. Even if they are not ready to pay that money to us now, government should come, dialogue with us and give us a timeline so that we know that in the next month or two, this is how much we will receive,” he said.
Clean Ghana project
The Ghana First company, under a Public-Private Partnership with the government, was engaged to construct 10,000 units of modern automated toilet facilities across all Metropolitan, Municipal and Districts around the country in a Clean Ghana project.
The company subsequently engaged other contractors to work on the project in order to meet project timelines.
We have no relationship with Ghana First Company – Sanitation Ministry
But the Ministry of Sanitation in February 2020 claimed that it had no direct relationship with the operations of the Ghana First Company Limited as alleged by the First Contractors Association demanding the payment of monies owed its members.
The group accused the Ministry of endorsing the activities of Ghana First Company Limited who awarded them contracts to construct toilet facilities across the country without payment.
Public Relations Officer of the Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, Nelson Akatey told Citi News the Ministry has no connection with the Ghana First Company Limited.
“The Ministry has no direct relationship with them, and they are supposed to source their own funds and liaise with the assembly for the thing to take off.”