2-Week ultimatum for Kpeshie Lagoon encroachers

BY: Joshua Bediako Koomson
 Some structures built very close to the lagoon
Some structures built very close to the lagoon

Encroachers along the Kpeshie Lagoon at La, near Accra, have been served a warning notice to vacate the area by the close of this month or have their properties demolished.

This is to pave the way for the redevelopment of the area into a recreational centre.

The notice was served by a joint team from the La Dadekotopon Municipal Assembly (LaDMA) and the Ledzokuku Municipal Assembly (LeKMA).

It was upon a directive from the Greater Accra Regional Coordinating Council (GARCC) as part of the “Let’s Make Accra Work” initiative.

Current situation

Currently, large portions of the Lagoon and its mangrove have been reclaimed and sold to individuals for residential and business purposes.

Further extensive portions have been filled with sand, construction debris and garbage seemingly in readiness for some development purposes.

The garbage and some unhygienic practices, particularly open defecation, by some squatters have polluted the lagoon, and said to be responsible for its inability to produce fishes anymore.

As part of the exercise, a task force from the two assemblies posted an eviction notice on all the structures along the stretch, asking the supposed squatters to move from the area before the end of this month.

The affected structures included mechanic shops, a pub, an eatery and rows of metal container structures, residential buildings, as well as uncompleted buildings.

Boundary issues

The Municipal Chief Executive Officer of LaDMA, Mr. Solomon Nikoi Kotey, said the assembly had tried unsuccessful in taking action because of boundary issues between LaDMA and LeKMA.

“This area is a boundary between LeKMA and LaDMA, and people are taking advantage of that. When one assembly decides to make a move, the dwellers will tell them the area belongs to the other assembly,” he explained.

“This time around, we have come together as a joint force, and I can assure you that on September 30, something will happen,” he added.

The Member of Parliament of La Dadekotopon, Mrs. Rita Odorley Sowah, said some efforts were made in the past to dredge the lagoon, but the structures in the area made it difficult for that to happen.

“There are a lot of things we can do with this lagoon. We can turn it into a tourist site by building hotels around the area, and this can create employment for the youth in this area,” Mrs. Sowah said.

Kpeshie Lagoon

The lagoon is noted for its serene atmosphere and served as a major source of economic activities for the people of La and its neighbouring towns.

It also serves as a breeding ground for some endangered species of birds.

In the past years, both assemblies had, on several occasions, served warning notices to the developers and individuals claiming the land in the area.