Kalbeo Residents Ring Alarm Bell
Shots of the Kalbeo link road and bridge
Residents of Kalbeo in the Bolgatanga Municipality in the Upper East Region, are sounding alarm bells over a possible cut off of their community, if the bridge linking the area to the rest of the municipality is not rehabilitated before the rains set in.
According to the residents, the bridge is very important to their livelihoods, because that is the major route they transport their farm produce to Bolgatanga to sell, hence their cry for immediate help.
Kalbeo is predominately a farming community, with almost 80 percent of the residents there being farmers and proud beneficiaries of the Planting for Food and Jobs Policy.
The residents disclosed that, last year despite the good harvest they made due to the support from the Planting for Food and Jobs Policy, many of them could not generate much revenue from their sweat because truck drivers refused to come to the area, for fear of capsizing due to the deteriorated bridge.
The few drivers who agreed to come to Kalbeo, also charged exorbitantly due to the high risk.
The community members fear that, if the bridge is not immediately renovated, many portions of it would be washed off when the rains set in.
If this happens, the farmers at Kalbeo are very likely to be denied good sales for their produce.
The Kalbeo bridge was constructed in 1996 through the efforts of the then Member of Parliament for Bolgatanga, Simon Anyoa Abingya.
It was meant to shorten the distance from the community to Bolgatanga and also to enable them to transport their farm produce to Bolgatanga to sell.
Surprisingly, the bridge has never seen any renovation under successive governments.
In 2018, to prevent a total wash off, the community members carried stones to fill all holes around the bridge; a year on, those stones have been covered by silt and would not be able to save the bridge in the event of a heavy down pour.
They noted that, they have been promised severally by Members of Parliament for the Bolgatanga Central constituency and yet there is nothing to show.
In line with what communities do during election years, the residents of Kalbeo have threaten to boycott the 2020 General Elections and will only rescind their decision if government shows commitment.
Meanwhile the Assembly member for the Kalbeo Electoral Area, Matthias Asokiyine has assured that the Bolgatanga Municipal Assembly has earmarked the Kalbeo bridge among broken bridges to be worked in the Bolgatanga Municipality very soon.
FROM: Ebo Bruce-Quansah, Kalbeo