Tema

Is a city on the Atlantic coast of Ghana. It is in the Greater Accra. Before Ghana’s independence, the government identified a small fishing village called Torman as the projected site for a modern sea port to serve the new Ghana. Torman residents grew the gourd plant known as tor in the local Ga language, from which a variety of products could be obtained, including tsene (calabash), akpaki and akoji; hence the name Torman (“Gourd Town”). This name was eventually corrupted to “Tema”.

In 1952, the government acquired 166 square kilometres (64 sq mi) of land north of the harbour, and entrusted it to the Tema Development Corporation. The “New Town” that was subsequently built on the site was planned as an industrial and residential complex. The villagers of Torman were ejected to make way for the project, and migrated to a new fishing ground around 3 kilometres (1.9 mi) away.

The main Tema Township was constructed, and the Tema Harbour officially opened, in 1962. Over the following decades, Tema grew into the industrial hub of Ghana and one of the best-planned cities in West Africa, with a carefully-constructed road layout featuring landscaping and street lights. It boasted modern recreational centers and other social amenities rare among African cities at the time.

A large population influx began in the 1960s owing to the city’s employment opportunities, but the Tema Development Corporation was unable to construct housing and provide other services to meet the needs of this migration. The Tema Newtown district was overwhelmed by the sudden population growth, and became the poor cousin of Tema Township, receiving none of the latter’s improved housing, geometrically-laid roads, or social amenities. Moreover, royalties paid by Tema Newtown’s companies to evicted villagers have not been used due to a chieftaincy dispute. The area’s fishing potential was thus not fully explored.

The importance of Tema as a port and industrial hub is reflected by the fact that the Ghana Police Service maintains a special policing region devoted entirely to the city.
Climate: Tema is characterised by a dry equatorial climate. It lies in the driest part of southern Ghana, experiencing average annual rainfall of about 790 millimetres (31 in). Average temperatures are high year-round, often exceeding 30° Celsius.

Facts

City:  Tema
Country: Ghana
Population: 160,939 (as of 2012)
Calling Code: 030
Time zone: UTC

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