The First Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Naa Okaikor Akufo-Addo, on Tuesday cut the sod for the construction of an ultra-modern market complex for the people of Cape Coast.
The facility, being constructed with funding from the Coastal Development Authority (CDA), will serve the over 70,000 residents in the ancient capital of Ghana and beyond.
It has a total of 280 stores including stores for fish sellers and butchers, 166 and 186 lockable and storage facilities on the ground floor and 76 stores at the upper floor with halls, conference rooms and a restaurant.
Scheduled for completion in 12 months, the state-of-the-art facility would significantly ease the hustle and tussle of fishmongers and sellers experience at the congested old market built over five decades ago.
The facility earmarked to provide the biggest market for fishmongers and other related activities will have CCTV systems powered by a solar power generation plant on the roof, modern sewage and waste management facilities, a water reservoir among others.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mrs. Akufo-Addo, said the gesture formed part of a commitment to give equal attention to empower women across the country.
Mr Jerry Ahmed Shaib, Chief Executive Officer of Coastal Development Authority (CDA), said the intervention was aided by the Ministry for Special Development Initiative under the one million, one constituency initiative by the government.
It will save traders from adverse weather conditions once completed and will help boost economic growth in the area to enhance living conditions of the people.
He expressed government’s resolve to ensure that the local content clauses in the Agreement were strictly adhered to in order to create jobs for the indigenes including contractors, artisans and cooks.
Again, he announced major interventions by CODA including moves to supply 5,000 outboard motors to fishers of which 1,000 had arrived as part of government’s intervention to revive the sector with innovative Policies and programmes.
CODA had also instituted a credit union to provide micro and small loans for start-ups and small businesses with fast, easy and accessible microcredit and small loans to grow and expand businesses as well as to enhance job and wealth creation.
Mr Ernest Arthur, the Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE), assured the people of Cape Coast that, government will continue to work hard for the betterment of all.
He pleaded with all to exercise restraints and support the Government as it worked to initiate well thought-out programmes and policies to bring economic prosperity to all.
Dignitaries at the programme included Osabarima Kwesi Atta II, Omanhen of Oguaa Traditional Area, Members of Parliament, and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executive (MMDCES) and party officials.