The Minority in Parliament has cautioned the government against negotiating an agreement with a strategic partner for the management of Terminal Three of the Kotoka International Airport.
According to the Ranking Member on the Roads and Transport Committee of the House, Kwame Governs Agbodza, any attempt to shortchange Ghanaians in the agreement will not be taken kindly.
The Minister of Aviation, Joseph Kofi Ada has indicated the need to find a strategic partner for the Ghana Airport Company due to its large debt portfolio.
“Ho is completed but not in use. Kumasi is under construction. We have taken a loan already. Tamale is under construction. Wa has been completed. Kotoka itself is over capacitated. I’m saying that Terminal Three will take 5 to 7 years to reach its full capacity. Terminal Two recently got upgraded and is not even in use.”
“They only hand over Terminal One to McDan and nobody even knows what he is doing there so what exactly is the strategic investor bringing? Is it to come and manage it because maybe the Minister and the Director are all not capable of managing it.”
“So I don’t think at this stage of Ghana’s life we needed a strategic investor to manage an airport when we can find our own money to build it. We don’t need anybody to manage it for us. So whoever doing the negotiations, we are told there is no agreement yet so whoever is in this strategic discussion should please watch what you are doing because it is not in the interest of Ghana,” he said.
Capital injection needed to boost Airport infrastructure and pay off loans
Meanwhile, the Managing Director of the Ghana Airports Company Limited, GACL, Yaw Kwakwa, has defended the company’s decision to partner with a foreign firm in the management of the country’s Airports.
According to him, the partnership is necessary to address a couple of operational challenges that ought to be resolved if Ghana is to become an Aviation hub as the government envisages.
Among other things, the company says it needs to repay outstanding debts including the money used to construct Terminal 3 of the KIA and expand other infrastructure at the various airports.
Mr. Kwakwa addressing a press conference on Thursday, July 9, 2020, said they are under pressure to find money to repay outstanding loans hence the need to consider alternatives like partnerships.
Earlier this month, the Minister of Aviation, Joseph Kofi Ada, in a statement dismissed reports that it has concluded processes to cede the management of Kotoka International Airport to a foreign company.
But Executive Approval has been signed by the President for the Ministry to facilitate an engagement with TAV-SUMMA Consortium to improve service delivery and expansion of infrastructure at the Kotoka International Airport.
This is to achieve the Government’s vision of making Ghana the Aviation Hub within the sub-region, the Minister said.
Terminal One of the Kotoka International Airport has already been rented out to McDan Aviation for a period of 15 years following the relocation of domestic flights to Terminal Two.