4,465km Cocoa Roads Awarded

Dr. Owusu Afriyie-Akoto

The Minister of  Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie-Akoto, says 286 cocoa roads contracts with a total length of 4,465.89km have been committed for construction since 2019 at a cost of GH¢13.6billion.

According to him, the contracts are made up of 258 no. feeder roads and 28 no. trunk/highway roads, noting that the contracts have been programmed to have a duration spanning between 12 to 48 months.

“The entire review process and project preparation was done upon several engagements and consideration with major stakeholders,” the minister stated on the Floor of Parliament.

The NDC MP for Adaklu, Kwame Governs Agbodza asked the Minister for Food and Agriculture how many cocoa road contracts were awarded since 2017 and the method of procurement used in selecting the contractors.

Dr. Afriyie-Akoto asserted that the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) had always ensured that procurement of road contracts adhered to the provisions of the Public Procurement Act, 2003 (Act 663) as Amended with (Act 914) and received the necessary approvals from the Public Procurement Authority.

“To obtain value for money and resource optimisation, COCOBOD continuously collaborates with the Ministry of Roads and Highways and its agencies for technical support and guidance to undertake the Cocoa Roads Improvement Programme,” he indicated.

According to him, with the assistance and guidance of the Department of Feeder Roads and Ghana Highway Authority of the Ministry of Roads and Highways, National Competitive Tendering (NCT), Restricted Tendering (RT) and Single Source (SS) procurement methods were used.

He revealed that the National Competitive Tendering was highly competitive, attracting over 800 contractors in the tendering process, and added that in all 40 no. road contracts with a total length of 328km were procured under NCT at a cost of GH¢496,040,098.91. This is the first of its kind in the history of cocoa roads programme in COCOBOD.

There are 69 no. road projects covering a total length of 651.0km that were procured under Restricted Tendering procedures at a cost of GH¢1,577,790,213.89.

“A total of 177 no. road projects were procured under Single Source Tendering procedures; 150 no. projects came under Department of Feeder Roads (2,218km) at a cost of GH¢4,286,831,982.61 and 27 no. projects under Ghana Highway Authority [1270km] at a cost of GH¢7,310,599,878.42.

The minister stated that COCOBOD had programmed to finance the cocoa road projects through a four-year COCOBOD budget cycle relative to the life span of the contracts.

The life span of the 40 no. National Competitive Tendering, 68 no. Restricted Tendering and 150 no. feeder roads range from 12 to 24 months, and their payment falls within the four-year budget cycle.

“It is important to note that 1 no. project [Nkawkaw – New Abirem road] is funded through a joint venture arrangement between COCOBOD and Newmont Ghana Gold Limited.

By Ernest Kofi Adu, Parliament House