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Jukwa bridge reopened in C/R

BY: Shirley Asiedu-Addo
Kwasi Amoako-Atta (arrowed), Minister of Roads and Highways, with others on the bridge
Kwasi Amoako-Atta (arrowed), Minister of Roads and Highways, with others on the bridge

The damaged portion of the Jukwa bridge on the Twifo Praso-Cape Coast highway has been temporarily fixed and opened to traffic.

Workers worked all day and into the night last Sunday to make the bridge passable, and reopened it yesterday[June 20, 2022] after its closure last Saturday when it caved in after the river had overflowed its banks.

Yesterday[June 20, 2022], the Minister of Roads and Highways, Kwasi Amoako-Atta, inspected the repair works and said the government was aware of the importance of roads to the daily lives of the people and would move with alacrity to restore road infrastructure destroyed by floods, hence the quick response team was set up to restore affected roads and bridges impacted by floods in 24 hours.

Mr Amoako-Atta said in spite of the quick response to fix the emergency, more works would be required to make the bridge more durable.

“There is a temporary reinstatement of the road. That is why I came here with all my engineers from Accra,” he said, indicating that the river would have to be dredged and then channelled properly to reduce the chances of flooding of the bridge in the future.

The minister and his entourage also visited the Abrem Brase community, where a culvert on the Srowi River, linking one end of the community to the other, was washed off by the floods.

Mr Amoako-Atta said the state of the culvert was more complicated and would require more time to be restored, and gave an assurance that the ministry would work to provide a steel bridge to reconnect the community within a month.

Relocation essential

The Central Regional Minister, Justina Marigold Assan, said the regional coordinating council would support efforts to pull down structures in waterways to save lives, and urged people living in flood-prone and low-lying areas to move to places of safety to prevent any casualties.

The Chief of Abrem Brase, Nana Brakwa III, said residents would hold government and the ministry to their promise of constructing a steel bridge for the community.

The Chief Executive of the Komenda Edina Eguafo Abrem KEEA Municipality, Solomon Appiah, said the assembly had received some relief items for distribution to some affected persons.

The livelihood of the people appeared disrupted by the floods, with dozens of families displaced.

Foodstuffs were now being kept on one side of the bridge waiting for carriers to carry them across an improvised bridge to the other side of the community for onward transportation to market centres.

Maame Comfort, a farmer, said the destruction of the culvert had disrupted her trade and that of many other farmers.

"Usually, the vehicles come to the farmers to cart our produce to the market. Now I need to pay carriers to carry the foodstuffs from the farm to the edge of the culvert and get other people to carry the produce across the river for a fee and then seek for a vehicle to pick them to the market centres. The cost has obviously become higher,” she said.