By Frank Amponsah
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has urged Ghanaian entrepreneurs to be at the forefront of the social and economic transformation of the country thence, asking Dr. Joseph Siaw Agyepong, Chairman of the Jospong Group of Companies to remain focus in the face of all the controversies.
According to the President, the level of work and contributions from Dr. Joseph Siaw Agyepong expose him as subject of controversy.
“It goes with the territory. I know you a little bit, and I know you are capable of handling it. Stay focussed.”
The President gave this encouragement during a visit to the Accra compost and recycling Plant, on Friday as part of his tour in Greater Accra Region.
The President who was enthused about the operations of the Jospong Group, operators of the Plant, stated that “more grease to your elbow, and the contribution you are making to our social life is inestimable. We have to encourage you.”
He expressed satisfaction with the operations of the Accra Compost and Recycling Plant, at Adjen Kotoku, explaining that the Plant is helping bring to bear an efficient, modern model of sanitation disposal.
According to him, “what we are witnessing here is the modern way of providing service, the collaboration between the State and private sector to deliver public goods. And, in this case, the most important in any city is sanitation.”
The president also averred that considering Greater Accra’s population of about 5 million and 7 million people, the city will have major troubles with hygiene and an “egress of cleanliness” if we do not have an efficient, modern way of dealing with waste disposal.
The Plant, the President added “is an eye opener for me. It is about what is possible, about what collaboration can do, and what is possible, with encouragement and proper policy framework, if we have confidence in Ghanaian entrepreneurs”.
The President was excited “about the idea that out of here too, it is making an important contribution to our balance of payments, by being able to export products out of here to neighbouring countries and afar. If you put all of these things together, we are seeing the best kind of collaboration between the State and the private sector.”
Dr. Siaw Agyepong on his part told the President that the company has invested some US$98 million in three different waste processing facilities across the country, employing some 700 permanent workers.
He averred that the Plant has a designed capacity to process 600 tons of waste daily.
He added that the visit of the president to the plant reminded them of his commitment to make Accra the cleanest city in Africa.
“The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources is a first step in that commitment. We see this as a smart and achievable vision, and we are happy to make this reality,” he added.
The Compost and Recycling Plant is an integrated waste processing and recycling company, established to receive, sort, process and recycle solid and liquid waste to produce organic compost for agronomic purposes in Ghana and in West Africa.
President Akufo-Addo also visited Zoompak Ghana Limited at Achimota, which specialises in the construction and management of waste transfer stations, collection and management of healthcare waste, amongst others.
In another development, the President also visited Abossey Okai to interact with spare parts dealers and business owners, as part of his tour.
He thanked them for the support offered him and the NPP in the run-up to the December 2016 elections, adding that “had Abossey Okai not thrown its support behind the NPP and myself, winning power would have been extremely difficult, so I am grateful to you.”
President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that his government has started to implement several of the pledges made to the Ghanaian people ahead of last year’s elections, i.e. Free SHS, the revival of the NHIS, restoration of allowances to nursing and teacher trainees, amongst others.
He reassured them that the 2018 budget, which will be read on 15th November, “will make you in Abossey Okai very happy”, and thus, urged them to be patient with government, stressing that all the promises made to them and Ghanaians will be fulfilled in the course of his tenure of office.