Politics

Boankra Inland Port Project stalls: Earthwork Cost Ballooned From $4m to $30m

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Documents available to newsmen indicate that the Boankra Integrated Logistics Terminal (BILT) popularly known as Boankra Inland Port Project has been halted due to an allegation of inflated cost of the project allotted for the first phase.

According to the document which was sent to parliament by the Concessionaire, Ashanti Ports Limited, the agreed amount of 4million dollars earmarked for the earth works ballooned to about 30 million dollars which reportedly brought some misunderstanding between the Concessionaire and the Ministry of Transport

The amount according to the Ashanti Ports Services Limited covers 27 per cent of the entire funds allocated for the first phase of the project, which when approved will affect the project’s financial projections.

Introduction of a New Consultant

The document dated March 25, 2024, and addressed to the Speaker of Parliament revealed that, the Transport Ministry through the Ghana Shippers Authority after acquiring 39 percent shares of the project brought in a consultancy company, Vision Consult.

Vision Consult was tasked to do the designs for the project and after submitting their designs, Ashanti Port Services Limited however discovered that, the consultant failed to add the cost of earthworks to the first phase of the project.

According to APSL, all parties involved in the project estimated to use 4 million dollars for the earthworks, adding that, they tasked Vision Consult to submit the final design and cost for the first phase

The document further disclose that, the Transport Ministry after assigning Justmo Constructions to work at the site later submitted closed to 30 million dollars for the earthworks alone something they opposed.

Following the opposition by APSL, the contract between the government of Ghana and the Concessionaire, APSL was abrogated by the Transport Ministry.

Court Injunction

Following the cancelation of the contract, Ashanti Port Services Limited (APSL) filed a writ at the Ghana Arbitration Center against the Ghana Shippers Authority (GSA) over the termination of the contract.

APSL in the writ invoked the powers of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law Arbitration, seeking damages amounting to over 3 billion US dollars, through the Ministry of Transport.

APSL, in its statement of claim, said its member of the consortium, Afum Quality Limited (AQL) entered an agreement with the Ghana Shippers Authority on 25th September, 2020 to construct and develop the Boankra Integrated Logistics Terminal (BILT) on a Build, Operate and Transfer basis (BOT) but the deal was unilaterally terminated by the GSA on 5th July 2023.

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