The deputy director in charge of Administration at the Ankaful Psychiatric Hospital, Godwin Pongo, has revealed that encroachers have taken over lands at the mental home located in Cape Coast in the Central region.
Speaking to the XYZ Breakfast Show Host, Kweku Vander-Pallen on Tuesday May 17, Mr. Pongo explained that encroachment on the hospital’s land is a serious challenge facing the facility.
The land which was acquired by Ghana’s first President Dr. Kwame Nkrumah to house mentally challenged patients has seriously been encroached upon by estate developers as hostels and other residential facilities continue to spring up near the hospital on daily basis.
“There is a building so close to our mortuary and I am afraid people will end up building close to our wards if they are not stopped,” he said.
Mr. Pongo argued that the encroachment if not halted will impede the congenial environment needed to support the rehabilitation process of inmates.
He explained that the growing trend of encroachment will also hamper future plans by the hospital to expand infrastructure in order to meet the increasing number of patients admitted each day at the facility.
According to Mr. Pongo, efforts by the hospital to get the appropriate authorities including the Lands Commission, the Metropolitan Assembly and the Regional Coordinating Council to ensure that the encroachers are stopped have proven futile.
The initial land owners, he explained, argue that they were not compensated when the land was taken from them by Dr. Nkrumah hence their continuous sale of the land to prospective buyers.