11 January 2019

Ghana: Demand for Regional Capitals - Let's Thread Cautiously

INDIVIDUALS, interest groups have started lobbying for, and making proposals for places of their choice to site regional capitals, following the successful conduct of the referendum that gave an overwhelming "Yes" vote to the creation of additional six regions.

The next major activity after the referendum is for the government, for that matter the President to issue a Constitutional Instrument, to give legal backing for the regions and the location of regional capital.

Indeed, siting of regional capitals comes with the considerations of many factors and that remain in the prerogative of the President. But whatever the choice of the regional capital, would be, a well-thought out locality that would meet the aspirations of the people would be chosen.

Inasmuch we respect the rights of the lobbyists, we advise that such craving for regional capital must be done with a lot of circumspection.

We are certain that the government is well aware of the aspirations and wishes of the people and that whatever decision that would be taken eventually in respect of a regional capital, would be in the interest of the people and the nations as a whole.

The Ghanaian Times believes that what is critical at this point is to cooperate with the government to accelerate the development of the regions.

What is important here is that chiefs, opinion leaders and community leaders must be encouraged to provide the lands and other local resources to enable the regions to take off smoothly.

It is a general expectation that the creation of the additional regions would facilitate development of some parts of the country that remained relatively undeveloped because of lack of proper care and attention.

Surely, it is the duty of the government to facilitate the development of all parts of the country. However, development cannot take place in an atmosphere of insecurity and disunity.

It is our hope that all interested parties craving for regional capitals and district capitals would remain calm and accept the decision on the locations of the regional capital, even if the decision is not in favour of their choice.

The government has already made a commitment and earmarked GH¢20 million for each of the new regions to accelerate infrastructural development, especially provision of motorable roads, decent offices and accommodations for staff, office machinery, and other social and utility services.

It is important for all to rally behind the government as it provides the needed policy direction for the accelerated development of the newly created regions in particular, and the overall socioeconomic development of the country.

Development entails improvement in our circumstances; development will uplift us from poverty, disease, illiteracy and hunger. But development does not come easy if we do not prepare ourselves by taking our destiny into our own hands.

We must eschew negative tendencies that derail development. Chieftaincy disputes, land litigations, violence conflicts, ethnocentrism, unpatriotism, corruption, to mention but a few, are some of the negative tendencies.

Again, in our craving and lobbying for regional and district capitals, let us be circumspect in our demands. Let's unite and support the government to continue to equitably develop the country.

Ghana

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