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Tema MESEC to clamp down on child prostitution

The Tema Metropolitan Chief Executive, Yohanne Nii Armah Ashitey, has indicated his resolve to clamp down on child prostitution in Tema Newtown.

The social menace which came to his notice on Friday during the second ordinary assembly meeting of the third session of the eighth assembly, is said to have gained roots in brothels and structures at a suburb called Ziginshor.

Speaking to the Ghanaian Times on the sidelines of the meeting, Mr Ashitey said there would be a crunch meeting with the Metropolitan Security Council (MESEC) to take immediate action with the police to arrest the prostitutes, patrons and demolish the brothels not only in Newtown, but other places where such acts had been identified.

He expressed worry that juvenile prostitution had become a bad influence on the minors who were oblivious of the ramifications of their actions.

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When done, he noted that his outfit would conduct a screening exercise to identify their potential and enroll them on skills acquisition training where Don Bosco Technical and Vocational Training Institute had allocated a permanent skills training place to the Assembly for such vulnerable groups to acquire life and technical skills.

On revenue performance, the Assembly had been able to collect GH¢19, 097,891.42 as at August 2022 representing 71 per cent of the GH¢ 26,812,082 projected Internally Generated Fund (IGF) for the year.

Mr Ashitey stated that the ongoing process to enhance service delivery of the Assembly required a commensurate increase in revenue generation which had caused the implementation of a number of initiatives in the revenue administration in line with the digitalisation programme of the government.

Among the initiatives were the enhancement of the revenue management system and early printing and distribution of bills, including several others being implemented in line with the Revenue Improvement Action Plan to expand the revenue base of the Assembly.

To maximise revenue collection by the Assembly in the course of the year, Mr. Ashitey said a Task Force had been constituted to mop up the collection of revenues stipulated in the provisions of the Fee Fixing Resolution, especially business operating permits and fines.

Owing to several misunderstandings between the Assembly and the public they serve, Mr Ashitey said he had instructed the Metropolitan guards who he described as the most visible personnel of the Assembly, to halt any form of individual arrest in the interim to ensure sanity in the metropolis.

Given the acts of indiscipline by some of the guards, he said at least six officers had been either suspended with loss of salary or reprimanded since he assumed office a year ago, adding that the guards would only make arrests during a massive operations.

Mr Ashitey stated that having identified the training gaps in the enforcement of the Assembly’s by-laws, the guards unit had been taken through training to enhance their effectiveness in enforcement and ensuring sanity in the metropolis.

He added that more of such trainings would be organised to enable them to carry out their mandate professionally and effectively.

FROM KEN AFEDZI, TEMA

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