The chiefs and people of Ekumfi in the Central Region on Thursday thronged Essakyire, the new district capital to celebrate the inauguration of the Ekumfi District in a grand style.
According to them, the long fight for a district was over. It was a grand occasion because every available space in Essakyire, where the district capital has been sited was occupied, with the Community Centre filled to capacity.
Cultural display, brass band music and 'Asafo' company, as well as singing groups, charged the atmosphere as people danced their hearts out.
Speaking at the historic occasion, the Acting President of Ekumfi Traditional Council, Nana Impraim, said the occasion marked a milestone in the development of Ekumfi Traditional Area, because their forefathers fought for it over the years, but could not get it.
He said successive governments had come and gone, but they did nothing about the creation of a district for the Ekumfi State, until the coming into office of their son, President John Evans Atta Mills, who has brought governance to their doorstep to help facilitate development of the area.
He said everybody in the district should count their blessing for being alive to witness this great occasion, which statement received a large applause from the milling crowd.
The Central Regional Minister, Mrs. Ama Benyiwa Doe, who inaugurated the newly created Essakyire District, said the inauguration of the district was in fulfillment of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) 2008 Manifesto, which promised to deepen the decentralization process in Ghana.
Mrs. Ama Benyiwa Doe said it was sad that some people decided to take the creation of the districts to court, adding that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) created 70 districts which the NDC saw as good thing, and wondered why the largest opposition party should kick against such an initiative by the government.
She, therefore, called on the people of the area to put their shoulders to the wheel and work together to make the district a model one in Ghana.
The Member of Parliament for Mfantseman East, George Kuntu Blankson asked his compatriots to be thankful to God, because some doubted the successful creation of the new district. He pointed out that it was a total independence for the people after a long struggle and urged them to forge ahead in unity, to develop the area for the benefit of the future generation.
The Municipal Chief Executive of Mfantseman, Henry Kweku Hayfron, disclosed that the government had allocated GHÂÂ¢, 000,000 seed money for the new assembly, while the first quarter of the Assembly's share of the Common Fund has been released.
He added that an amount of GH ÂÂ¢100,000.00 was made available by the Local Government to purchase office equipment. He said the new assembly was carved out from the Mfantseman District would provide a wide range of opportunities for the people in the area, in terms of socio-economic development.
The 36 members of the new assembly were introduced to the crowd, with Mr. Emmanuel Basie as the District Coordinating Director. The Palace of late Nana Akyen VI has been renovated to house the offices of the assembly.
The people could not hide their appreciation to President Mills for giving them such a golden opportunity.
In a related development, Michael Boateng reports from Banda-Ahenkro that the Chiefs and People of Banda Traditional Area have applauded the government for carving the Banda District from the Tain District to enhance development.
During the inauguration of the newly created Banda District, the Paramount Chief of Banda Traditional Area, Osabarima Okokyeredom Kwadwo Sito commended the government for the various developmental achievements and other projects underway in the Banda District. Banda District is among the five newly created districts in the Brong-Ahafo region, which has its capital at Banda-Ahenkro, whilst the other four are Dormaa West, with Nkrankwanta as the capital, Techiman North, with Tuobodom as the capital, Asutifi South with Hwidiem as the Capital and Sene Eas,t with Kadjedji as its capital. According to Osabarima Okokyeredom Sito, the Banda area is far behind in terms of development, such as in education infrastructure among others, but the current government had come to their aid and given them a new district. He expressed the area's gratitude to President John Evans Mills and the General Secretary of the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, for fulfilling the needs of the chiefs and people of the Banda District. The Paramount Chief of Banda, who chaired the inaugural ceremony of the district, pledged his full commitment to the promotion of peace, to ensure the development of the newly created district. At the inaugural ceremony, Mr. Asiedu Nketiah was installed as the "Nkosuohene" (development chief) of the Banda Traditional Area, with the stool name of Sie Kwadwo Nketiah I. The Minister of Transport, Alhaji Collins Dauda, who inaugurated the newly created Banda District, pledged Government's continued commitment to bringing development to the district and taking special care in fostering and promoting peace, and building a better Ghana.