The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Jinapor, has said the reconstruction of the Apiatse community that was levelled by an explosion earlier this year will hopefully commence by July 2022.
The Minister who was speaking in parliament Tuesday indicated that an estimated amount of GHS 70 million will be needed for the project.
The estimated amount, he stressed, may rise by the time the project is completed due to inflation .
Jinapor who is also the MP for Damongo made the revelation when answering a question which stood in the name of Mr. Robert Wisdom Cudjoe, MP for Prestea – Huni Valley but was asked on his behalf by the MP for Ellembele, Mr. Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah. .
Giving details of the Apiatse project Mr. Jinapor also stated that GHS 42, 527.380 has been realized from the Apiatse Funds.
Out of the amount, he said GHS 1 million has been released to the Apiatse Reconstruction Implementation Committee for the construction of temporary structures for victims of the disaster.
Mr. Jinapor also stressed that the amount received by the Apiatse support fund is just a small portion of what the committee will need to put together a new settlement for the people who have been displaced since January.
Thirteen people died from the explosion incident while over hundred people suffered various degrees of injuries.
The Apiatse Support Fund was established following an explosion which occurred when a truck carrying explosives for mining was involved in an accident at the town.
In April this year, the Chairperson of the Apiatse Support Fund, Rev Dr Joyce Aryee, said although the Fund at the time had received a little over GHS 37 million, the amount was not sufficient to finance the rebuilding of the community.
Dr. Aryee told Piesie Okrah on Dwaboase on TV XYZ in Akan that “honestly, the funds available cannot rebuild the community” and asked for Ghanaians to donate more to the Fund.
She could not tell the exact amount that can cater for the rebuilding of Apiate but hastened that more funds were needed due to the nature of work that has to be done.
Dr. Aryee also disclosed that the company whose vehicle exploded and caused the damage, Maxam Ghana Limited, had began paying the $6 million fine imposed on it by the government.
“They have paid twice since the fine was imposed. They are to pay in bits according to the agreement made with the government” she said.
The company, according to XYZ sources, has agreed to pay $5 million or its cedi equivalent to the government in 18 equal installments of $277,777.78 from March to August 1, 2023.
Barely 3 months after the explosion, the Apiate residents in a makeshift community near Bogoso in the Prestea Huni valley Municipality had been displaced by rainstorm several times.
The first incident in April raised concerns over the delay in rebuilding the village.
Close to 100 persons had to sleep on the corridor of a classroom block which is already housing some of the victims.
They resided in tents and some in classrooms, awaiting the rebuilding of their community until this unfortunate incident.
A pregnant woman who was affected by the floods told XYZ News that “we won’t get a place to sleep tonight.”
“Look at me. I am pregnant and vulnerable and this has happened to us here. We are appealing to the government to intervene. We are suffering,” she lamented.
Another man who was seen fetching rainwater from his tent bemoaned their condition of living.
“This is where they brought is to sleep after we were displaced. Now whenever it rains, we don’t get place to lay out head,” he said sorrowfully.