A five-member technical team set up to assess the current organizational structure of the Central Region Development Commission (CEDECOM) and make preliminary proposals for its restructuring, on Thursday presented its report to the Regional Minister, Madam Ama Benyiwa-Doe at her office in Cape Coast.
The team led by its chairman, Dr Bernard Joe Appeah, a management consultant, also presented copies of the document to the Ministry of Trade and Industry, CEDECOM's sector ministry.
President John Evans Atta Mills in his sessional address to Parliament in February this year, announced plans to revive CEDECOM to enable it lead in the crusade against poverty reduction in the region.
Consequently the Central Regional Coordinating Council engaged the team to undertake the preliminary work of institutional and organizational assessment of the Commission to serve as a basis for further work which would be done in consultation with Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Dr Appeah said CEDECOM has been identified as a key player in accelerating private sector led growth to help reduce poverty in the region.
The document identified and assessed the role of the Commission since its inception in the region and named the promotion of private sector investment, the implementation of programmes to economically empower women, the undertaking of tourism development projects and programmes during which the Kakum National Park was established and the restoration of the Cape Coast and Elmina castles as some of the activities the Commission had carried out.
The Commission also promotes agriculture, forestry and environmental improvement, and provides information, communication and technology support for the private sector to enhance its growth.
The document made five key recommendations among which was that the governance structure should be revised to make the Commission autonomous, and an independent technocrat engaged to chair its board and report to the Regional Minister who currently chairs the board indicating that the Minister is now the “referee and at the same time the player.”
Other recommendations were that the human resource capacity should be strengthened and more qualified people engaged to perform more effectively and efficiently, while its financial based augmented to make it more viable to carry out its functions.
Madam Benyiwa-Doe, who received the documents, said the Regional Coordinating Council in collaboration with Ministry of Trade and Industry will work with the document and urged the team to closely monitor them until all the recommendations were carried out.
The other team members were Dr Ferdinand Ahiakor and Mr. Felix Opoku, both lecturers at the Economics Department and Business School respectively at the University of Cape Coast.