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26.04.2004 Regional News

Deputy Minister of Information visits Volta Region

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Ho, April 26, GNA- Mr Stephen Asamoah Boateng, Deputy Minister of Information on Monday expressed reservations about the regulation of TV transmission to the Volta Region because of high electricity overheads. He said money owed to the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) could be restructured and paid under terms mutually acceptable to the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) and the ECG.

Mr Boateng was answering questions on the Volta Star, a local FM station in Ho as part of his duty tour of the Volta Region during which he would meet with chiefs and address durbars to explain and collate feedbacks on government policies.

He said government had already purchased equipment to replace the old one at the Akatsi and Amedzofe transmission stations and that while they were being assembled all efforts must be made to transmit to the people at all times.

Mr Ralph Avornyo, the Volta Regional Acting Director of the GBC who hosted the programmes, said that GBC TV terminates its transmission in the region at about 23 hours to reduce electric power costs, which is about 18 million cedis and 15 million cedis monthly for the Amedzofe and Akatsi stations respectively.

Mr Boateng said aside of the programme to provide new relay equipment to the GBC, government would in due course purchase TV cameras and "editing suits" to increase coverage and improve quality of work. The Deputy Minister said one indicator of the government's commitment to reducing corruption in the country was the Procurement Bill, which is designed to curb underhand dealings in purchasing.

Later Mr Boateng paid a courtesy call on Chiefs of the Asogli Traditional Area and also addressed Heads of Department and Assembly Members of the Ho District.

In an answer to a question, he said the National Health Insurance Scheme was only taking 20 per cent of the health budget off government. Mr Mawutor Goh District Chief Executive for Ho said the District was actively organising people in the informal sector in groups for the scheme to begin in the area.