Management of the Ghana Trade Fair Company (GTFC) has refuted claims that the demolition exercise carried out over the weekend was to witch hunt opponents of the NPP.
Contrary to claims that an injunction had been served on the company, preventing it from carrying on with the demolition, the company says it was never served notice of any injunction from any court.
GTFC said in a statement: “When the company commenced demolition of some redundant facilities in the first quarter of 2019, some of the businesses took the company to court and further secured an injunction to restrain the company from evicting them from the site.”
However, on Wednesday, February 12 2020, an Accra high court gave the permission “for the government to go ahead with the facelift of the Ghana Trade Fair Centre for the betterment of the nation as well as the plaintiffs”.
The court ruling said there was no evidence that “a salient fact was brought to the attention” of the court.
“It is my considered view that since the plaintiff/respondents are not seeking for title to the land but rather compensation, general damages and an order compelling the applicant to consider them as part of any further development of the Ghana Trade Fair site by the defendant, it will be fair and convenient to vacate the injunction order which I accordingly vacate for the government to go ahead with the facelift of the Ghana Trade Fair site for the betterment of the nation as well as the plaintiffs should they be able to prove their relief A,” the court said.
Madeco Horison Ventures Ghana Limited and 20 ORS, on January 23 2020, brought instant application seeking an order to set aside an injunction order of the court on April 29 2019.
Reliefs sought by the applicants included an order for them to be part of any future development of the GTFC site; a perpetual injunction restraining GTFC from evicting them or, alternatively, an order directing the defendant to pay them fair compensation for evicting them and general damages.
The application was, however, not considered by the court.
GTFC pulled down a number of structures belonging to different companies following a redevelopment project it intends to undertake. The exercise took place on Sunday.
Some people have condemned GTFCL for the action, describing it as political witch hunt.
However, according to GTFC, it took all the necessary steps to inform its tenants about the redevelopment project and tried to protect them and their investments.
“The GTFCL wants to make it categorically clear that, contrary to what is being speculated in the media, no business or businesses have ever been targeted for demolition because of their political or other affiliations,” it pointed out.
The statement further said GTFCL informed all the tenants about the redevelopment project, and gave them the mandatory 6-month notice on July 10 2018 to vacate the site by December 31, the same year.