Madam Justina Owusu-Banahene, the Bono Regional Minister has said the Sunyani airport cannot operate safely if they do not demolish encroached buildings around the area.
According to her, houses have been built too closer to the airport which has been a major factor affecting the speedy completion of airport’s rehabilitation and its subsequent operation.
Mad. Owusu-Banahene was addressing the Bono Regional House of Chiefs (BRHC) at its first general meeting of the year in Sunyani in response to a request made in a welcoming address by Osagyefo Oseadeeyo Agyemang Badu II, the Paramount Chief of Dormaa Traditional Area and President of the House for update on the rehabilitation of the airport.
The meeting was to identify issues affecting the speedy and holistic development of the Bono Region and the needed roadmaps to avert hindrances to its smooth development process.
Mad. Owusu-Banahene said though about 95 percent of work was completed, the roofing sheets of the encroached houses would affect visibility of pilots and would therefore “be more dangerous if an aircraft is about to land”.
She expressed worry “there is likelihood the situation can consequently result in an uncontrollable disaster, which may have the tendency to affect lives of many innocent people and other houses located about 1000 metres away”.
Mad. Owusu-Banahene declared “demolishing of some houses remains the only option to make the airport to operate safely”, and therefore appealed for support from the chiefs for that action.
She stated the traditional rulers were the custodians who sold such plots of lands for the users, hence their consent and collaboration with other stakeholders could effectively facilitate for the demolishing exercise to be effected.
“Even if the Assemblies mistakenly sold such plots of lands, ‘Nananom’, until demolition exercise is carried out, operations of the airport is risky”, the Regional Minister stressed.
Later, in a short ceremony led by Nana Yaa Ansuaa, the Paramount Queen of Drobo Traditional Area and President of the Bono Regional Queen mothers Association, the House officially welcomed and enstooled Mad. Owusu-Banahene as a member ceremonially.