The Coastal Development Authority (CODA) has started construction works on the Cape Coast Artisanal Village at Mempeasem in the Cape Coast North Constituency.
A brief sod-cutting ceremony to mark the beginning of work on the project was held on Wednesday, 1st July, 2020.
The ceremony was graced by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Coastal Development Authority (CODA), Jerry Ahmed Shaib; the Deputy Minister of Works and Housing and MP for Cape Coast North, Barbara Asher Ayisi, the Mayor of Cape Coast, Ernest Arthur and the Deputy CEO of CODA, Mr Kingsley Kofi Karikari Bondzie.
There was strict adherence to COVID-19 safety protocols at the event.
Also present at the event were officials of the Ghana Chamber of Commerce.
The project, which is under the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Programme (IPEP) will be put up on a twenty (20) acre plot of land.
When completed, it will provide a suitable setting for artisans in the Cape Coast Metropolis to help them better ply their trades in a congenial atmosphere that engenders safety and development.
Addressing the chiefs and people of Cape Coast, Ernest Arthur, stated that construction of the project, which is long overdue, is emblematic of the realization of an age-old dream of Cape Coast and its inhabitants.
He also said that the Cape Coast Constituency had always wanted to construct the Artisanal Village.
“The constituents have come to witness the groundbreaking ceremony with a unity of purpose because the Artisanal Village is a valued project envisaged by the people of Kokompe,” he said.
Mr. Arthur thanked President Akufo-Addo for his commitment to the development of Cape Coast which is being carried out through the initiative of the Coastal Development Authority (CoDA).
Also, Barbara Asher Ayisi, in her speech, said completion of the project will further enhance the socioeconomic credentials of Cape Coast which is already noted for being a “citadel of education and a hub of tourism.”
She entreated constituents to continue to pray for the President to enable him continue touching the lives of the people of Cape Coast and Ghana as a whole with more development.
IPEP in Cape Coast
In his address, Chief Executive Officer of CODA, Lawyer Jerry Ahmed Shaib stated that the primary motive for the construction of the Artisanal Village, which is a brainchild of President Akufo-Addo, is to provide artisans such as electrical technicians, auto-mechanics, etc with a suitable environment to ply their trade in a well-structured and fully furnished facility conducive for mechanical engineering purposes.
He said that, to ensure sustainable development of Cape Coast, it was important for all artisans to carry on their trade at the right place.
The CEO further urged all artisans to cooperate by relocating to the Artisanal Village upon completion of the project.
He at the event listed a number of projects being implemented in Cape Coast under the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Programme (IPEP). He said some of them include a community-based health and services (CHPS) compound, a disability-friendly water closet toilet facility and a market with open stalls and storage facility.
The project, which will be constructed at a cost of GHS7.2million is expected to be completed by the end of December 2020 even though it was originally intended to be completed within a year.
The CEO also indicated that, the contractor will be required to recruit artisans and other workers for the project from Cape Coast in accordance with CODA’s local content policy.
The first phase of the project includes the stabilization of the land to include cutting and filling, construction of concrete retaining walls and boundary/fence walls.
It also includes bays for sprayers, welders, spare part dealers, upholstery workers, auto mechanics, auto electricians, blacksmiths and brake liners, air conditioning and radiator divisions, toilet facilities, connection to water and electricity and boreholes.
Mr. Jerry Ahmed Shaib encouraged artisans in Cape Coast to avail themselves of the CODA Credit Union, which is designed to provide microcredit facilities ranging from GHS1,000 or more at a negligible interest rate to help them boost their businesses.