New regional, district capitals to be determined by consensus – Dan Botwe

Mr Dan Botwe

Mr Dan Botwe

The government has stated that it will give the option of selecting towns designated for regional and district capitals to stakeholders in the newly created regions.

Minister of Regional Re-organisation and Development, Dan Botwe explained that traditional authorities and the people of the yet to be inaugurated regions should consult among themselves and submit their decisions to the government.

The Minister said this yesterday at the End Time Assemblies of God Church at Adentan in the Greater Accra Region, and emphasised that the government would then give finality to these decisions, in accordance with the relevant laws.

He said though the referendum ended successfully through God’s intervention, there was the need to ensure that the citing of the district and regional capitals did not disadvantage anyone.

“The greatest hurdle has been cleared; the selection and naming of places should not create enmity among the very people who voted massively to champion equal development opportunities for their communities.

“The tension and emotions prior to the referendum must not be revisited hence the option of a broader consultation among the people for peace to prevail for the rapid development of the areas,” he added.

Mr Botwe inidicated that it did not matter where the capital would be located adding that, there would be equitable distribution of departments and agencies to ensure balance of power and prompt development.

The Minister stated that the announcement of regional capital would not be done in isolation, but in consultation with the chiefs and people because the locals have some great ideas that would help in the process.

“I can tell you on authority that the chiefs and people of the affected areas are consulting among themselves and would soon communicate their decisions to government for consideration,” he stated.

Mr Botwe said the GH¢20million dollars seed money is also ready and would be released as soon as the processes were completed.

The Minister said the referendum was a constitutional requirement that began in 1902 and followed through to 1969, 1979 and 1992.

He said both the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in their 2016 manifestoes promised to create new regions as such the referendum was not just imposed on the people but rather as a means of getting closer to the people.

Mr Botwe indicated that a ministerial committee had been set up to come out with the developmental plans of the areas and assured that every community would get its fair share of development.

The Minister urged Christians and other religious groups to join any political party and get a position that could help them transform the lives of others.

The Head Pastor of the church, Reverend Dr Francis Nyarko commended the Minister for the opportunity to worship with the congregation and assured of continuous prayers for the peace and progress of the country.

The president of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) Mr Affail Monney who also fellowships in that church expressed optimism that the peace enjoyed currently in the affected areas would be maintained after the inauguration for the socio-economic development of their areas.

BY LAWRENCE VOMAFA-AKPALU

 

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