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Development gap dominates Town Hall Meeting

2009-10-08 19:46:58
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The Upper East Region Thursday formally launched the Town Hall Meeting programme, to enhance public participation in local governance and strengthen the pillars of democracy by deepening the understanding of the people to appreciate government business.

The Regional Minister, Mr. Mark Woyongo who opened the forum expressed worry about the wide development gap between Northern Ghana and Southern Ghana in almost every sphere of life.

He said it was for this reason that government was determined to adopt bold initiatives such as the establishment of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) to address the imbalance.

He made reference to the mode the colonial masters introduced secular education to the country as a glaring example of the deliberate policy by the authorities to under-develop the North.

Mr. Woyongo said there was a wide educational deficit of about 160 years between Southern Ghana and Northern Ghana, saying “whereas the first castle school was established in 1737 in Cape Coast, the first school in Northern Ghana begun in 1907 in Navrongo.

He said SADA would identify and harness all the economic potentials of the Savannah areas of Ghana to enable the local authorities to pursue a relentless and massive infrastructural development that would trigger off a decent development agenda especially for the Upper East Region.

Mr. Woyongo said the region would be celebrating its 50 years anniversary in September next year and in connection with that, he has made series of proposals to government for consideration, including the upgrading and improvement of some state infrastructural amenities such as residential facilities and roads, which are in serious state of disrepair.

On agriculture, Mr. Woyongo indicated that because the region was disadvantaged ecologically with just one rainy season, government sought to encourage the youth to go into dry-season farming.

He said government had therefore awarded eight major dams for rehabilitation in some selected districts in the region.

He said another intervention in poverty reduction was a 107 million- dollar support programme from donor partners for the Northern Rural Growth Programme, which was intended to help the people to initiate practical business programmes to create wealth and improve on their lives.


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