11.03.2005 General News

Nominee says Accra choked with FM stations

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Accra, March 11, GNA - Dr Ben Aggrey Ntim, Deputy Minister-Designate of Communications, on Friday said it was becoming difficult to give out frequencies for the operation of FM stations in areas such as Accra because of limited technology. He said frequencies available in some urban areas were now exhausted and it would, therefore, be better to encourage the establishment of FM stations in rural areas.

Dr Aggrey Ntim was answering a question posed by a member of the Appointments Committee of Parliament in connection with difficulties encountered in acquiring a licence to set up of an FM station in the country.

On rural telecommunication, especially for the newly created districts, the nominee said the Government had established a telecommunication fund, which would support investment in the sector and help in extending more facilities to other areas in the country. On some challenges faced by mobile phone users, especially in making calls, the nominee said it would be necessary for the authorities to institute sanctions and monitor the operations of service providers to ensure efficiency in service delivery.

Dr Gheysika Adombire Agambilla, Deputy Minister-Designate of Science and Environment, when he appeared before the Committee, said there was the need to encourage people in the Upper West Region to seriously undertake tree planting to deal with desertification, which was threatening the environment.

On pollution, emission of smoke from faulty vehicles and the littering of the environment, the nominee strongly urged that the by-laws of the various assemblies be enforced.

He said clean air was a public property for the common good and people should, therefore, not be allowed to pollute it without being punished.

Dr Agambilla said there was the need to go into recycling of plastic waste to deal with the problem.

Mr George Benson, Deputy Regional Minister-Designate, Upper West Region, during his turn, said the Region was faced with deep levels of poverty, illiteracy and under-development.

He said everything must be done to reduce poverty in the communities by transforming agricultural practices in the Region from the present traditional and a rain-fed agriculture.

He said the farming capabilities of the farmers should be enhanced to lift the Region up.

On the development of football in the Region, the nominee said he would help mobilise the people in that direction and support a football team currently in the Region.

He mentioned the problem of female porters from the Region working in Accra and Members of Parliament, who had problems over the release of their District Assemblies' Common Fund, as some areas that would receive his attention. 11 March, 05

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