THE NEWLY-elected president of the Building Contractors Association, Prosper Ledi, has called on contractors to position themselves as worthy partners of government to develop Ghana.
According to him, the infrastructure needs of the country cannot be met without an effective local construction industry.
Mr. Ledi, who is founder and Chief Executive of Proko Construction Ltd, was elected unopposed by the Association of Building and Civil Engineering Contractors of Ghana (ABCECG) at its 10th Annual General Meeting and Conference held in Winneba. He took over from Martin Nnuro.
Speaking in an interview, Mr. Ledi noted that the construction industry was central to the economy which slows down any time constructors are not paid and vice versa.
He said the construction industry faced challenges and said collaboration between government and contractors could help provide solutions.
“As leader of the association I will galvanise our members into a formidable group and engage government continuously. This is our country, we are the builders, and once we do our homework well, we can get every government to do what we believe is appropriate,” he stressed.
Mr. Ledi, who has over three decades of experience in the industry, said the delayed payment for work done without interest, improper regulation of the industry, an unlevel playing field, as well as the general mistrust and badmouthing of indigenous contractors, were major challenges.
He added that his team of executives would use their term in office to drive up membership and build a united front for contractors.
Also, he said they would push for the formation of a Construction Development Authority and institute various programmes to build their capacity and reward outstanding contractors.
“The only way we can also get the big jobs, and stop the perennial delayed payments is to be united, build our own capacity and be seen as a credible partner to the country’s development.”
ABCECG is made up of both indigenous construction firms, as well as foreign firms registered and working in Ghana.
Mr Ledi said he would push for both groups to cooperate and leverage on each other’s strength.
Ghana has a huge infrastructure gap, which is one of the major reasons why the government is looking to China for funding.
There are also reported cases of shoddy works and haphazard siting of structures.
Mr. Ledi said the problems also constitute opportunities for contractors.
He, therefore, invited all building and civil engineering contractors in the country to become active members of ABCECG, so that together they could champion the cause of contractors in Ghana and make them major stakeholders in the country.
The conference was used to elect Tony Asante-Gyinae as 1st Vice President, Harry Anim-Danso as 2nd Vice President, Martin Ganyo Nukpezah as National Treasurer and Dela-dem Ocloo as Assistant Treasurer.
The rest are Yusif Mohammed Ali, Northern Sector Organiser, Sampson Ayiku, Southern Sector Organiser, Agnes Ofori, Trustee, George Peter Grant and Charles Siessegh, also a Trustee.
BY Samuel Boadi