The Advertising Association of Ghana (AAG) has called on the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) to resolve boundary disputes among the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to curb the double demand for fees for billboards erection.
The members of the Association contended that the lack of clear demarcation of boundaries has led to contentious issues between the advertising agencies and the MMDAs, particularly the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA).
Mr Joe Amartey, the President of the AAG, made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency at a validation workshop on Smart Procedures and Standards for “Out of Home Advertisements” in Accra.
He said there were boundary issues between the AMA and Ga South; La-Dadekoton and Ledzokuku Krowo; and Tema and Kpone Katamanso, which needed to be resolved to make the advertising business very convenient.
Mr Amartey expressed concern that with the recent announcement by the Government of the creation of new districts; “we foresee that this problem of boundary disputes will become even bigger.”
He appealed to the MLGRD to help resolve these disputes to pave way for the advertising business to flourish and create jobs in the country.
“To worsen matters, billboards of advertising companies whose businesses pay huge revenues to the various MMDAs are removed for road construction without compensation to the owners whereas squatters rather earn compensation,” he said.
The President commended the Accra Metropolitan Chief Executive, Mr Mohammed Adjei Sowah for recognizing the urgent need to bring the advertising stakeholders together to develop a single document on Outdoor Advertising Standards to guide the industry.
Mr Adjei Sowah, who opened the workshop held under the theme: “Adopting International Best Practices to Improve the Management of Out of Home Advertising”, tasked the participants to validate the draft document and come out with comprehensive local solutions to the challenge.
He said urban development was a cross-cutting activity and needed the coordination and collaboration of all stakeholders, adding that; “please provide us with practical answers to the challenges facing our metropolis with respect to out of home advertising.”
“When new policies and regulations are put in place, there are winners and losers, and those individuals who have been used to the old order will definitely not be happy,” the MCE said.
Mr Adjei Sowah said the world is changing and new technologies and more innovative ways of protecting the people and creating enabling environment for economic transformation must be obeyed to benefit the society.
He called on the participants to appreciate the new system and standards that would contribute towards making Accra and the country smart, adding that; “we are resolved to ensure sanity in the advertising industry.”