Cattle herders are exploiting the porous fencing of the 1,200 acres of the Tema Freezone enclave to graze their cattle in the industrial hub.
The situation is creating a security threat and a nuisance for some 85 companies who struggle to curtail the movement of animals to prevent accidents and mitigate damage to properties.
Mrs Patience Agbleze Acorlor, the Director of the Tema Administrative Office of the Ghana Free Zones Authority (GFZA), highlighted the challenge when Mr Kobina Tahir Hammond, the Minister of Trade and Industry, visited the office during a familiarisation tour.
“Because of those gaps we have in the fence wall we have cattle coming in. Unfortunately, you fix it, they break it, you fix it, they break it,” she complained.
“The fence walls have observation posts and so security would have to be stationed there, but somehow the security persons are saying the posts are too isolated.”
The enclave, which provides employment for 7000 persons, consists of 37 Free Zone enterprises and 48 non-Free Zone enterprises.
Mrs Acorlor mentioned other challenges facing the enclave to include, deteriorating roads, lack of adequate streetlights and irregular water supply.
In the meantime, she said, the GFZA, with support from partners such as the World Bank and GIZ, was carrying out some projects that included the construction of roads and fence walls, expansion of water storage facility, introduction of affordable transport project and canteen services.
Mr Hammond who expressed delight at the progress of development at the enclave said the GFZA must strive to be the centre for industrialisation and commerce by widening its scope of operations to attract more companies to the enclave.
“We wish that you generate a lot more productivity, employment and revenue for the country,” he said.
He said it was distressing to know of the challenge with cattle herders which, was a serious security threat adding that, “I don’t think that is acceptable and I don’t know to which extent the security forces of the country are aware of it.”
The issue, he said, would be laid before the appropriate security agencies to have the matter resolved.
“It (enclave) is supposed to be a secure place for economic productivity and to have a free range of herdsmen and their cattle is dangerous to start with,” the Minister said.
He later visited the 10-acre-construction site of the Reroy Power Company, Toyota Tsusho Manufacturing Plant, and the Nissan Assembly Plant, all located in Tema to interact with the stakeholders towards addressing the challenges.
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