HousingInvestment

Government nears completion of 185 housing units for public servants in Ashanti Region

Ashanti Regional Minister Simon Osei Mensah expects these homes to be ready for occupancy by the end of the year, reflecting the government's commitment to addressing housing needs in the region

The government is in the final stages of constructing 185 housing units for public servants in the Ashanti Region, replacing existing bungalows on lands returned to the Asantehene through an Executive Instrument.

In 2022, 400 acres of state land in Kumasi’s Ridge Residential Area were released to Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, following the issuance of Executive Instrument 432 of 2021 for the Redevelopment of Sector 18 of Kumasi.

“The revested land contains both privately-owned properties to be maintained and state bungalows to be relocated to the area retained by the Government. All leaseholders of private and public residential and other properties within the revested area are also to attorn tenancy to the Asantehene,” the letter released at the time read.

Ashanti regional lands officer, Peter Osei-Wusu, has shed light on the decision to revert lands to the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, citing the historical context of uncompensated land acquisitions during the colonial era.

Osei-Wusu explained that the Asantehene’s request for the return of certain lands was rooted in the absence of compensation for lands acquired during colonial times.

He noted that while the Asantehene could have requested the return of all the lands, a mutual agreement was reached where half of the lands were allocated back to him.

“His Majesty made a legitimate appeal that some of these lands should be returned to him. But he should have taken all because compensation was not paid. The government decided that we should keep half and then give half to his majesty,” he stated.

He highlighted the progress made in replacing state bungalows demolished due to land reversion to the Asantehene. He mentioned that construction of new facilities to replace the 116 state bungalows is nearing completion, with approximately 200 units expected to be available upon project completion.

To finance this initiative, Osei-Wusu explained that part of the lands retained by the government were allocated to private developers in exchange for constructing housing units.

He said, “So you come put up a number of bungalows for us and then we give you land, that is what we have been doing. So in all, we are talking about 200 units.”

He emphasised that thorough processes were followed, including assessments by the Ghana Institution of Surveyors for value for money and approvals from the Public Procurement Authority for the commencement of construction by contractors.

Regarding the financial aspect, Osei-Wusu reassured that the government is not disadvantaged in the deal, as the land values are evaluated at around US$600,000 per acre, matching the cost of construction.

Ashanti Regional Minister Simon Osei Mensah expects these homes to be ready for occupancy by the end of the year, reflecting the government’s commitment to addressing housing needs in the region.

Reporting By Oberempong Lisbon Perry and Jonathan Ofori, Ashanti Region

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