The Cape Coast Regional Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCRCCI) has advised the Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly (CCMA) to get the requisite documentation on the land at Mempeasem earmarked for the relocation of the artisans of the Siwdu garages.
Additionally, the Chamber has tasked the CCMA to launch a rigorous education campaign, advocacy and consultation with the artisans on the impending exercise.
Also, the plans and the commitment for the development of the lagoon should not be diverted as soon as artisans were moved from the site to sustain the confidence of all stakeholders.
The chamber said while the artisans were in support of the relocation, problems with the topography of the Mempeasem site must be addressed.
These were contained in the recommendations of a research conducted by the Chamber with support from the Business Sector Advocacy Challenge (BUSAC) Fund, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the European Union (EU).
The research among others inquired about the views of artisans and other stakeholders on the proposed relocation of the artisans from the Siwdu garages to Mempeasem.
It also assessed the effects of the relocation on the beautification of Cape Coast Metropolis and evaluated the potentials of the Fosu Lagoon when developed as a tourist enclave to contribute to tourism growth, income generation and employment in the Metropolis.
The researchers used convenience sampling to select respondents from the garages based on availability and willingness to participate in the survey.
Speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on findings of the research, Mr Anthony Yoofi Pokoo-Aikens, Regional Chairman of the Chamber, said there is the need for facilities such as roads and drainage systems to be provided for the effective functioning of the site before the relocation.
He said it also recommended that customer training be offered for the operators of garages to help them maintain patronage even after relocation and also offer them access to proper credit to enable them revamp their businesses.
Mr Pokoo-Aikens said members of the garages want the Mempeasem site to be improved to meet the standard of a modern garage with facilities such as water, toilet, proper landscaping and pavement, appropriate drainage system among others.
Mrs Benedicta Anita Mensah, the Regional Executive Secretary of the Chamber, said there is the need for more engagements with all stakeholders while basic amenities should be provided to allay the anxieties of the artisans before the relocation.
She said majority of the respondents agreed that the relocation exercise would actually beautify Siwdu and create a conducive environment for aquatic life in the lagoon to thrive.
The CCMA had for more than a decade and a half ago earmarked artisans at Siwdu for relocation to reduce noise pollution as well as prevent pollutants from the garages into the Fosu lagoon.
It will also enable the Assembly to redesign of the area around the Fosu lagoon into a tourism enclave.