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24.04.2007 General News

Gov’t supports houses of chiefs with vehicles

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The Ministry of Chieftaincy and Culture is to provide 10 4x4 cross-country vehicles to be distributed to all the 10 Regional Houses of Chiefs to enhance their mobility and administrative efficiency by the end of the year.

The Ministry is also considering recruiting qualified professional and supporting staff to be posted to the regional houses, which did not have those categories of staff.

This was contained in a speech read for Mr Sampson Kwaku Boafo, Minister of Chieftaincy and Culture, at the opening of a training course for 31 queen mothers drawn from the southern parts of the country in Techiman.

The five-day workshop organised by the Centre for Indigenous Knowledge and Organisational Development (CIKOD) and the Centre for Development Studies (CDS) of the University of Cape Coast is on the theme: "The role of traditional authorities in natural resource management" and sponsored by Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS), a German foundation.

Mr Boafo explained that government recognised the important role traditional authorities played towards national development and would do its best to uplift the image of the chieftaincy institution.

He said the Ministry intended to preserve, sustain and integrate the regal, traditional and cultural values and practices to accelerate wealth creation and harmony for total national development.

This, he said could be achieve through education of chiefs on government policies for good governance, conflict resolution among various groupings, supporting the various chieftaincy and cultural institutions administratively and financially.

The Techiman Municipal Chief Executive, Mr Prince Yaw Donyina noted with regret that the country had lost over three-quarters of its natural resources due mostly to the activities of man and climate hazards.

He said the region had been spearheading the national crusade against bushfires, which together were the single largest cause of forest and vegetative cover loss in the country.

Mr Donyina noted that the training was also of special important to the region because part of it lied between the transitional forest zone of the south and the savannah of the north.

He urged the participants to educate their people on the disadvantages of environmental degradation.

Nana Afia Abrefa II, Queen mother of Techiman traditional area who presided appealed to the Chieftaincy Secretariat to consider giving allowances to queen mothers to enhance their living conditions.

She appealed to the participants to take the workshop seriously and to use the knowledge acquired to bring about rapid development in their various areas.

Mr Bernard Guri, Executive Director of CIKOD said the workshop was the last of the three-module training course jointly designed by his outfit and CDS since 2005.

He disclosed that CIKOD and CDS had plans to institute a local innovations support fund to provide small grants and support to traditional leaders, especially queen mothers to support development programmes in their communities.

The participants would be taken through concepts of community resources and rural livelihoods, natural resource management for sustainable rural livelihoods, forest policies and their efforts on the livelihoods of fringe forest communities and community organisational development for participation of communities in natural resource management and benefit sharing.

Source: GNA

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