BONABOTO Area Paramount Chiefs make a strong case for Airport to be sited at Sumbrungu

Paramount Chiefs of the BONABOTO enclave in the Upper East region have collectively appealed to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to site the yet to be constructed Upper East Regional Airport at Sumbrungu in the Bolgatanga Municipality.

The traditional rulers made the request when they paid a courtesy call on the President at the Jubilee house on Friday.

Tongraan Naab Kugbilson Nalebegtang, Paramount Chief of the Talensi Traditional Area who spoke on behalf of his colleagues paramount chiefs disclosed to the President that contrary to his pledge to ensure that the Airport was sited at a suitable location, Hon. Joseph Kofi Adda since taking over as the Minister for Aviation following a Ministerial reshuffle has been making frantic efforts to re-develop the technically unsuitable Paga Airstrip against the interest of the people of the Upper East and North East Regions.

The siting of the Airport became contentious when it emerged that some steps were being taken to abandon the original site in Sumbrungu and settle on other proposed sites, including the Paga Airstrip.

This move has however been kicked against by the chiefs who have made a strong case for the Airport to be sited nowhere but Sumbrungu.

The Tongraan said “Bolgatanga is the Regional Capital and all Regional Airports are sited in their regional capitals and there is no reason to vary this in only Upper East Region. Bolgatanga is central in the Upper East and North East Regions and to major towns including Walewale, Bawku, Zebila, Nalerigu, Navrongo, etc and thus convenient for all travelers no other location meets this criterion”.

He added that “Commercially, siting the project at the old site in Sumbrungu or Bolga Sherigu both located between Bolga and Navrongo as inspected by Ms Cecilia Dapaah will benefit a wider community in the area including Navrongo, Bolga, Kolgo, Naaga, Bongo and others better than the corner in Paga”.

The chiefs further stated unequivocally that there is no reason why the President’s will and wish for the people should not be carried adding that “We carry here a petition on behalf of our people signed by all the Paramount Chiefs of the BONABOTO area and the Chiefs of Sumbrungu and Bolga-Sherigu with the background of the Bolgatanga Airport, minutes of a meeting between the Regional Coordinating Council and Ghana Civil Aviation Authority and the Cadastral plan of the Airport attached for your review and consideration”.

Earlier this year, Aviation Minister Joseph Kofi Adda in an interview on Bolgatanga based A1 Radio avered that a decision to sink resources into clearing a site in Sumbrungu, a suburb of Bolgatanga Municipality for the purpose of constructing an airport was a financial loss to the state.

The site, which was cleared in the early 90’s remained abandoned and has become a site for grazing by animals.

The proposed airport which has a runway of 120 meters width and a length of 3.5 kilometers is yet to see a major development after decades of fallowing.

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