The dust surrounding the controversial Atta Mills Memorial Library in Cape Coast will soon be settled following the assurance from the contractors to release the keys to the University of Cape Coast by May this year as originally planned.
The Chief Executive of the Mandev Ghana Limited, the contracting firm that executed the project, Mr Joseph Kojo Mamphey, said he had received firm assurance that he would soon be paid all outstanding debts after which the library would be handed over spot and clean.
Mr Mamphey, who had locked up the library after completion and inauguration by then-President John Dramani Mahama in 2016, expressed delight that the processes leading to the settlement of all outstanding issues was proceeding smoothly and positively.
He said he had started putting finishing touches to restore little wear and tear that had occurred and clean the place in readiness for the handing over and expressed his gratitude to those involved in the negotiations and payment.
Asked about how much was left to be paid, he said it would be a sign of disrespect to mention the amount because by the grace of God, it was being resolved.
Narrating the circumstances leading to the current state of the library, Mr Mamphey noted that Mr Kofi Totobi Quakyi, the Chairman of the Planning Committee for the Library Project did an excellent job in ensuring that he received the initial amount.
He added that when the payment was being delayed, he contacted Mr Totobi Quakyi on the issue and that the UCC also made a representation to the government but all to no avail.
He said he had come to realise that the non-payment “became my headache but I have realised that God had turned it out for good”.
He singled out Mr Totobi Quakyi and Commodore Steve Obimpeh who was also a member of the committee and said but for some of their initiatives, the library would not have been completed.
Asked to explain why he had locked up the library, Mr Mamphey said it was a principle to protest against the practice where Ghanaian contractors executed projects and when it came to payment, they were subjected to unnecessary delays.
When the question about the source of the project was put to him, he said because he received cheques from the government from the Jubilee House “I want to believe that it was a private initiative but the government was involved”.
Mr Mamphey said he was aware that the Telecom Chamber was the main sponsor and added that when the payment was being delayed, he contacted Mr Totobi Quakyi, with the UCC also making representation to the government but all to no avail.
He said out of those delays, he was sure that something good was coming his way including the famous Cape Coast Green City Project which he did not give much detail about.
Reacting to concerns that although he had locked up the place he opened it four times for visitors including Nancy Pelosi, Melania Trump and the celebration of Panefest among others, he explained that “in all these instances my company bore the cost of hosting those people at the request of the Omanhen of Cape Coast, Osabarima Kwesi Atta II”.