Central Region Ranked 4th Poorest In Ghana… Pres Asks CEDECOM To Reverse It

mahamaPresident John Dramani Mahama has expressed worry that despite the enormous potentials in the Central Region, it has been ranked the fourth poorest area in the country in a recent Ghana Living Standards Survey, conducted by the Ghana Statistical Service.

He said the region had educational institutions and tourists attractions, which could have been harnessed to facilitate the development of the area.

President Mahama made the observation at a durbar held to climax the celebration of this year’s annual “Fetu Afahye” of the people of the Oguaa Traditional Area, in Cape Coast at the weekend.

He asked the Central Regional Development Commission (CEDECOM) to formulate a strategic plan aimed at improving the socio-economic conditions of the people.

“It is absolutely unacceptable for the Central Region, which has the best educational institutions, tourist attractions and other economic ventures, to be among the poorest regions in the country”, the President said.

The chiefs and “Asafo” companies undertook a colourful procession through the principal streets of Cape Coast, to showcase the rich cultural and traditional heritage of the people.

This year’s festival, which marked the 50th edition, was on the theme: “Celebrating Oguaaman, past achievements and the way forward”.

President Mahama said the government would support any policy by the CEDECOM to fast track development, towards the elimination of  poverty.

He said that the region had played a significant role in national development since the colonial period, through to the independence and post-independence era.

Cape Coast, the President stated, was the first place to witness western education, civil service and the judiciary, and explained that, such encounters should have reflected in the lives and living conditions of the people.

President Mahama said that the Komenda Sugar Factory after its completion would contribute significantly to the economic fortunes of people in the region.

He reiterated the government’s commitment to developing all the 14 landing beaches in the region with the view of improving the lives of fisherfolks and their dependants in the region.

Touching on the construction of the Kotokuraba Market, the President stated that work on the project would commence on October 1, and explained that work on the temporary market to facilitate the relocation of the traders had been completed.

President Mahama tasked the Regional Co-ordinating Council and the Cape Coast Metropolitan Assembly to work with the traders to ensure their smooth relocation.

On the Cape Coast Sports Stadium, President Mahama indicated that the construction of the facility was in progress, and it would be completed in August 2015.

Concerning the outbreak of cholera in the country, he appealed to Ghanaians to collaborate in ensuring the promotion of good sanitation practices.

On the provision of health facilities, he said, Cabinet, had approved the construction of 10 new polyclinics in the Central Region, and mentioned the beneficiary areas as  Gomoa Dawurapong, Besease, Biriwa, Etsii Sunkwa, Asikuma Gyamena, Agona Duakwa, Binpong Akunfude, Ekumfi Narkwa, Twifo Atimokwa, and Gomoa Potsin.

On the Ebola outbreak, the President pledged the government’s commitment in taking the necessary steps to check the spread of the disease to the country, and appealed to Ghanaians to join the current educational campaign on the disease.

President Mahama urged Ghanaians to pay particular attention to the educational campaign on the spread of Ebola.

The Paramount Chief of the Oguaa Traditional Area, Osabarima Kwesi Atta II, expressed concern about the deteriorating performance of students at the basic education level in the area.

The abysmal performance, he said, had deprived students in accessing some of the prestigious second cycle schools located in the area.

Osabarima Kwesi Atta expressed worry about the unemployment rate in the region, and appealed to citizens from the area to invest in the area to create jobs for the youth, and to unite for development.

The Central Regional Minister, Acquinas Tawiah Quansah, said government was committed to creating jobs  in the region.

From David O. Yarboi-Tetteh, Cape Coast

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