THE Techiman Traditional Council and the Techiman Municipal Assembly are constructing an airstrip in Techiman.
The 24-square kilometre airstrip, estimated at GH¢1,000,000 and scheduled for completion in three months time, is to enhance commercial activities and boost tourism.
It is also to facilitate emergency response for people in critical condition referred to Accra and elsewhere for intensive medical care by way of transporting them easily and faster to prevent deaths.
The land for the construction of the airstrip has already been surveyed by the Ghana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA), which has given its approval for the necessary works to be done for the airstrip to start operation.
This came to light when a two-man delegation from the National Security Council Secretariat, led by Mr Ebenezer N. Hanson and Group Captain A.N. Nkansah (retd), called on the members of the Techiman Airstrip Project to know at first-hand the preparations made so far and to inspect the site for the airstrip to ensure safety and security.
Briefing the delegation on the project at the Techimanhene’s palace, Nana Asare Baffour Twibrenpong II, the Adontenhene of Techiman Traditional Area and chairman of the project, said an amount of Gh¢20,000 had so far been used to clear the site for the necessary works to begin.
He stated that plans had been made to turn the airstrip into a complete airport in the future.
Nana Twibrenpong said the idea for constructing the airstrip was necessitated by the demise of the late paramount chief of Techiman, Odotobrebi Takyi Ameyaw II, about five years ago.
He said it was impossible to rush the Omanhene, who was suffering from cardiac arrest, to the 37 Military Hospital for medical attention due to the lack of airstrip, resulting in his death on the way while being sent to Accra by road.
According to him, if there were a facility for air transport in Techiman, the life of the late chief could have been saved.
Nana Twibrenpong stated that Techiman, being a commercial hub for the sub-region, and attracting almost all the financial institutions in the country, needed air transport facilities to save traders who travelled long distances by road to transact business from armed robbery attacks, as well as promote tourism in the area.
He said the traditional council had also initiated the construction of a 100-unit police barracks at Techiman to enable the Ghana Police Service to post more personnel to the municipality to combat crime in the area.
The chief stated that the police barracks project was at the sub-structure stage, and therefore appealed to the delegation to impress upon the relevant agencies to assist the council to complete it.
Touching on the recent shooting incident at Tuobodom in the Techiman Municipality, which resulted in the injury of six people in the convoy of the Techimanhene, Nana Twibrenpong said the perpetrators had been identified but no arrest had so far been made.
He, therefore, appealed to the National Security Secretariat to, as a matter of urgency, to intervene to bring all the culprits involved in the incident to book in order to restore peace to the area.
Mr Hanson, on behalf of the National Security Co-ordinator, commended the traditional council and the assembly for their foresight.
He said since all the necessary requirements had been met, they should continue with the construction of the airstrip.
Mr Hanson assured the Techiman Traditional Council that their appeal would be sent to the appropriate quarters for redress.
The delegation later inspected the land earmarked for the airstrip and the police barracks project.
Among the chiefs present at the meeting were Nana Appenteng Gyeabour, Hansuahene and Baamuhene of the Techiman Traditional Area and Nana Owusu Agyare II, Akwamuhene, both of whom are members of the airstrip project committee.