A couple of weeks ago, the Vice President of the Republic, Dr. Mahamud Bawumia gave a presentation of the state of infrastructure of the country since the coming into office of the Akuffo Addo administration. Those of us who are outside the country were glued to our seats hoping to hear our towns being beneficiaries of the massive infrastructure development in Ghana.
If I am not mistaken, he said the government has undertaken about 8746 projects and those projects are at the various stages of completion. As a native of Sunyani, the former regional capital of the Brong Ahafo region and currently the regional capital of the Bono region, I was attentively waiting to hear what was going on in the “Suncity” by way of infrastructural development.
At the end of the presentation, I was not only sad but also disappointed. The only mention of my Sunyani was when he was talking about airport projects in the country. Even on that, he said for the Kumasi and Tamale airports, “construction “ work of the airports were on going but on Sunyani he describe the work there as “rehabilitation”. My checks at the airports revealed that the so-called rehabilitation work is just as extension of the runway and nothing more.
After literary wiping away my tears, I ask myself what our political representatives to be specific our MP is doing on behalf of the town he has represented in the parliament for over a decade. I have asked the question before and I want to ask the same question here again whether we have an MP? What is he doing to “fight” for projects for the town? Whether we like it or not politicians who indeed think about their constituency when it comes to developmental projects will always lobby for projects and not think about how many houses or radio stations they can put up. Nobody is against the current MP but the truth is that he has failed and has not done anything that will be a legacy for which he can be remembered of when tomorrow he is no more.
I don’t know whether he listened to the presentation by the Vice President and if he did, I am wondering what went through his mind after the presentation. Mr. MP, never think that anybody is against you, what we are asking of you is not something above your ability. As a majority Chief Whip, we want to see the town receiving its fair share of the national cake, so to say. As a regional capital, is the “rehabilitation of the Sunyani airport” the only thing that should come to us in the midst of about 9000 infrastructural projects? This brings me to the type of politicians we have in the region these days.
I can say with all certainty that the politicians that we have in the region now don’t think about the development of the region but rather on how many properties they can acquire. I don’t have a problem with a politician building hotels and setting up radio and TV stations. What I am against is doing so at the expense of the general good of the people they represent. Today we don’t have politicians from the region who can fight for the interest of the people they represent.
I ask myself where are the J.H Mensahs, A.A. Munufies, the Owusu Acheampongs of our day? These are the men who stood for the region and did not think about their personal interest and as such their names are always ringing in the minds of the people in the region. From the days of the Bonokyempim era, these people with the help of some Chiefs had the interest of the region at heart and as such were always prepared to champion the interest of the region above their personals interest.
I am yet to see the same type of politicians from both major parties in the region these days. Most of the politicians in the region now are grapping properties like “brato” while others in other parts of the country are thinking about the projects they can bring to their area. One thing that our politicians from the region should not forget is that they will not occupy those positions forever and that one day, they will be described as “former MP or former Minister” and they will come to live in the towns and cities that they did not help.
When the Vice President announced that there was going to be an airport in Cape Coast, something just amazed me. I saw politicians from both NPP and NDC in the Central Region all defending and supporting the project. Can we see that in our region? In regions like Ashanti and others, when it comes to development projects, there is no NPP or NDC. The development of the region is paramount so they all come together to get things for their regions. I read an article recently about the MPs in the region being described as “one MP one radio station” politicians. After all the radio stations, hotels and other properties not to talk about the numerous houses, can our politicians point to something concrete that they have done for the good of the people they represent?
Back to the forgotten regional capital – Sunyani, I think the youth of the town should come together to form an advocacy group to put our MP to work. We should demand accountability and let him know that we are expecting much from him because much has been given him. Sunyani should not be missing in action when it comes to infrastructural projects in the country.
Honourable MP, I will be following your campaign from a distance to see the promises and the assurances that you are going to give to the people in your constituency especially those in Sunyani. Some couple of weeks ago, I heard the Chief of Dwinim asking the President to come to the aid of Sunyani in terms of some projects when he paid a courtesy call on the President, Nana Akuffo Addo.
Sunyani doesn’t deserve the crumbs from the table so this time around we are not going to sit down for us to be lagging behind when we are looking at infrastructural projects. I am calling on all citizens of Sunyani and those who may not be citizens of Sunyani but have the interest of the town at heart both home and abroad to join in the fight for Sunyani and more importantly to put our political representatives at work
To the politicians in the Bono region especially, the MP for Sunyani East, Hon Kwasi Ameyaw Cheremeh, wake up and work for the people who have entrusted their votes to you for over a decade. If in the past nobody was watching you, these days there are a lot of people who are thirsty for development and as such are prepared to work with you for the good of “Suncity”.
You should not see those of us who have started talking as your enemies but rather partners in development. Listen to some of the things we say or write about and Sunyani will forever remember you when you are no more there. A word to the wise is enough.
Augustine Boahen, Calgary, Alberta Canada. Email: [email protected]