General News of Sunday, 6 January 2019
Government insists there will be extensive consultation before capitals are selected for the six new regions endorsed in last month’s referendum.
According to the Regional Re-organisation Minister, Daniel Kweku Botwe selecting a capital will not be done in a whimsical manner as heeding to interested parties lobbying for it.
“This is what they have been fighting for decades, their forefathers wished they could have certain things.
“The next stage for regional creation and selecting a capital is when we come together and get support from technocrats and take a decision,” he told Joy News’ Fred Kwame Asare.
His comment follows intense lobbying by chiefs and people of Buem to get Jasikan selected as the capital for the Oti Region.
An overwhelming majority (98.64 per cent) of registered voters who reside in the area voted in favour of the creation of the Oti region out of the Volta region last year.
Nifahene of Buem speaking at the Oti Region referendum victory rally had said Jasikan best suits the capital given its historical role as the headquarters for the then Buem-Krachi District Council.
Nana Opraw Akuamoah added that Jasikan is also geographically positioned in the Oti enclave and have the needed infrastructure to kickstart the administration of the new region.
He, however, implored government, not to centralized all major functions and activities of the regional capital in a single location.
“It is important from the onset for government to review and determine over time a regional development body that seeks to make judicious use of the natural and other resources of the Oti region,” he stressed.
For his part, Lawrence Azialie, the Jasikan District Chief Executive, said preparations are far advanced to ready Jasikan to host the Oti region administrative capital.
“We foresaw this long ago and so my office and the general administration of the Jasikan District office begun to prepare the way.
“As we speak, the residency for the regional minister is ready, so we have the land and natural resources to host the capital,” he said.
Daniel Asiamah, the MP for Buem urged the chiefs to ensure that government appointees follow strategic planning to develop the Oti enclave.
“…in the planning of a city, we need a proper plan with access roads, residential and other facilities. Those things must be taken a critical look at…I will plead with the president that people who will be appointed to lead this region will not be allowed to put the structures anyhow.
“When it happens that way, in the future, our cities will be messed up,” he said.