Graphic Online

Graphic Online 

Occupants of Kaiser Flats vacate to evade forcible ejection

BY: Benjamin Xornam Glover
Some of the rooms barricaded with wooden planks after the eviction
Some of the rooms barricaded with wooden planks after the eviction

Occupants of four blocks of flats earmarked for demolition within the Kaiser Flats enclave have finally vacated the structure.

This has paved the way TDC Company Limited to take possession of four block apartments which will be demolished at a date yet to be communicated for subsequent redevelopment.

The exercise was supervised by officials of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), the TDC, Tema Metropolitan Assembly, the Ghana Police Service and personnel from National Security.

Even before the team arrived at dawn on Thursday, more than 90 per cent of the affected persons had voluntarily vacated the flats.

Injunction

As at 7 am, only one occupant claimed she and her family had no place to go and was being assisted by the NADMO to move into a safe haven while another tenant had secured a court injunction seeking to prevemt TDC Development Company Ltd from forcibly ejecting her family.


Mrs Janet Barnes, of Room number three, Block 407 had filed a motion for injunction against the TDC from demolishing her flat at the High Court, Land Division in a writ date January 30, 2018.

The case will be heard on February 13, 2018.

The Director General of NADMO, Nana Prempeh Agyemang, who was at the scene to supervise the eviction exercise, visited the aggrieved lady and admonished her to move out since her safety and that of her family was at stake.

Also present at the site officials of Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) who disconnected utility services to the affected Flats.

Members of the TDC taskforce also barricaded the rooms of the evicted tenants to prevent intrusion.

The Director General of NADMO, Nana Prempeh Agyemang commended the affected residents for making the work of NADMO and the other agencies very simple by complying and voluntarily moving out even before the due date.

Squatters

The illegal occupants of the flats at Tema Community Four had sought court action to restrain the TDC from ejecting them, but after years of litigation, the High Court in a Judgement delivered on October 28, 2013 ruled in favour of the latter.

The TDC subsequently obtained a writ of possession to remove the occupants to make way for the redevelopment scheme planned for the whole of Tema, especially the Kaiser Flats area.

The recovery of the blocks was undertaken by the court, sometime in July 2017 but due to some interventions, the exercise was aborted by the court. Later, the occupants went to court to plead for some time to vacate the flats.

The court obliged and gave the occupants up to the end of January 2018 to completely vacate the block of flats.

History

Built in the 1960’s as a temporal structure to accommodate expatriates who were building the Volta Aluminum Company, the Kaiser flats have outlived its usefulness, and there are severe structural damages.

The four flats earmarked for demolition after as assessment conducted by the AESL are part of many structures in that enclave that seems to be falling apart anytime soon.

TDC has indicated it preparedness to extended its renovation exercise to the remaining blocks of flats in the area.
In all,  187 persons were affected in the ejection exercise on the four blocks of flats.