THE MINISTER of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment, Hon Stephen Asamoah Boateng has begun a two-week tour of the Ashanti Region.
The tour was aimed at finding out the current challenges of the 21 MMDAs and designing workable strategies to improve the local government system in the region.
Before he began the tour last Monday, Hon. Asamoah Boateng paid a courtesy call on the Ashanti Regional Minister, Hon Emmanuel Owusu Ansah at his office, where he explained the purpose of his visit.
He said Government was committed to the proper and effective development of both the urban and rural environment with the support of the assembly members and staff of the MMDAs.
Hon. Asamoah Boateng later addressed staff of the Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA), as well as assembly members.
The minister said there was the need for his ministry to focus its attention on the deplorable conditions of feeder roads in the districts, the poor sanitary and environmental conditions and other basic necessities of life which would enhance the survival and welfare of the people.
He said he was aware that the KMA was experiencing problems with revenue collection, resulting in revenue gaps with its attending problems of low salaries for staff.
Hon. Asamoah Boateng urged the MMDAs to intensify revenue mobilisation efforts at all levels and also educate people on environmental, sanitation and other health-related issues to enhance good economic and social governance, adding his ministry had procured some machines to help monitor the revenue collection for the KMA.
He called on the MMDAs to ensure that estate developers complied with all the regulations or by-laws governing the construction and designing of houses and other buildings in the country.
The minister urged the assembly members to support positive initiatives, stressing the decentralisation exercise that had been adopted by Government should be fully supported by the MMDAs so that each and every Ghanaian could lead a better life.
Madam Patricia Appiagyei, the Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE) of KMA on her part, appealed to the minister to ensure that the MMDAs were supported in their efforts to get the sub-structures of the assemblies well established.
She gave the assurance that the KMA was doing everything possible to ensure proper development of the metropolis and therefore called for support from the assembly members and the ministry of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment.
Hon. Asamoah Boateng later visited some on-going projects in the metropolis, which included the City Hotel, Asafo Interchange, the KMA Land Fill Site at Oti near Dompoase and the re-development of the Jackson Park.