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08.10.2004 General News

Gov't seeks Dutch Grant to solve Mankessim Water crisis

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Mankessim (C/R), Oct 8, GNA - Vice-President Aliu Mahama on Thursday said the perennial water problem at Mankessim would be addressed when the government receives a grant from the Dutch government by the end of the year.

The Vice-President said this at Mankessim during a durbar of chiefs and people of the area as part his two-day tour of the Central Region that took him to six communities in the Mfantsiman, Twifo-Hemang-Lower Denkyira districts and the Cape Coast Municipality.

The Dutch grant, estimated at 35 million dollars, would be used to provide a new treatment plant and replace obsolete parts of the distribution network and to expand it.

Part of the Mankessim water crisis would, however, be addressed by the rehabilitation works to be executed at Cape Coast and Agona Kwanyako.

Vice President Mahama assured the people that the Electricity Company of Ghana would be directed to address the problems of power fluctuations and frequent outages.

He told them that their request for inclusion in the phase two of the Urban Five Project was under consideration to befit Mankessim's new urban status.

The Vice President, who earlier laid the foundation stone for the reconstruction of the Mankessim Market estimated at over five billion cedis, assured the people that the government would continue to execute infrastructure, education, health and income generation activities. More than 700 classroom blocks, he said, had been built since 2001 while health facilities are being located within five kilometres of every community.

He said the mandate of the NPP administration had to be renewed to enable it to continue with its good work.

"You need to question the track record of everybody who seek your mandate to rule. "Politics is not about conflict but about development and welfare and we are all competing for your mandate to serve you."

"But if someone comes to you, you have to ask about their track record and what they can do for you. We must do clean campaign and not fabricate stories to win points, " he said.

"I have no doubt that the NPP has served you well and would, therefore, receive your overwhelming approval."

Vice President Mahama said the NPP inherited an economy that was in shambles but through hard work had turned the clock around and the masses of the people are today enjoying a better standard of living. He recalled the unstable prices of commodities and high inflation rate before 2001, saying by dint of hard work the administration had stabilised the cedi and the unstable prices.

The Vice-President reiterated that interventions in the cocoa industry and incentives to farmers had resulted in the doubling of yields, while the President's Special Initiatives (PSI) on cassava, garments, oil palm and other products were creating jobs.

Nana Sakyi III, Obaatan of Nkusukum Traditional Area, commended the government for upgrading Mankessim from a town to an urban council. He also appealed to the government to expedite action on the market project.

At Twifo Praso where the chiefs of Twifo Hemang, Mampong, Praso and Denkyira held a joint durbar, the Vice President told them to mobilise their resources and seek government support to establish cottage industries.

He said their land was very fertile not only for oil palm, but other produce, therefore they should maximise it for agro processing and manufacturing to create jobs and wealth.

Nana Amoah Sasraku, Omanhene of Twifo Hemang, thanked the government on behalf of his colleagues, for upgrading the Twifo Praso Senior Secondary School, the provision of electricity, health facilities and the mass cocoa spraying exercise.

He, however, urged the government to transform the Jukwa Secondary School into an agricultural college.

Nana Sasraku also appealed to the government to ensure that the Central Region Lands Commission releases the compensation paid by Twifo Oil Palm Plantation to the beneficiary farmers.

The Vice President addressed similar durbars at Anomabo, Cape Coast and Saltpond, where he urged the people to be tolerant of opposing political views and work towards free, peaceful and successful polls in December.

Professor Dominic Fobih, Minister of Lands and Forestry, Mr Kwamena Bartels, Minister of Private Sector Development, Ms Christine Churcher, Minister of State responsible for Basic, Secondary and Girl Child Education, Mr Stephen Asamoah Boateng, Deputy Minister of Information and other public officials, accompanied the Vice President.