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10.10.2005 Regional News

Asantehene calls on financial institutions to assist chiefs

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Kumasi, Oct.10, GNA - The Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu 11, has called on financial institutions to assist chiefs to open business avenues and offer employment to the youth. He said the financial institutions could offer credit facilities while chiefs use part of their lands as collateral to secure loans to establish industries to promote business enterprises in the country. The Asantehene made the call at the launching of the 10th Anniversary celebrations of the Otumfuo Opoku Ware 11 Jubilee Foundation and the opening of a Photo exhibition at the Manhyia Palace Museum in Kumasi at the weekend. He said the Government alone could not provide all the basic needs of the people and it therefore, behoved on chiefs to help initiate development activities with the people to attract the Government's assistance. O tumfuo Osei Tutu urged the chiefs to be truthful and transparent in their endeavours and refrain from negative attitudes and acts that tarnish the image of chieftaincy. The Asantehene said his predecessor instituted the Foundation to support good health, quality education and good governance within Asanteman and was therefore, incumbent on the management of the Foundation to live up to expectation. He called on those who implement programmes of the Foundation to map out strategies and diversify into other income generating activities to make it self-sustaining.

Mr Sampson Kwaku Boafo, Ashanti Regional Minister who led the Barclays Miles Ahead Expedition Team to pay a courtesy on Asantehene and participate in the launching, stressed the need for people to cherish the nation's cultural heritage. He said the Government alone could not accelerate the country's socio-economic and cultural development, therefore, establishment of the Foundation had assisted improvement in education. Mr Boafo congratulated the Asantehene and Executives of the Foundation for good work done and was optimistic they would continue to intensify their activities to uplift the image of Asanteman.

Nana Asafo Boakye, Chairman of the Anniversary Planning Committee said since the establishment of the Foundation, it had pursued and was still pursuing its set objectives to achieve more success in future. He enumerated some of the successes chalked by the Foundation, and stressed that the establishment and maintenance of the Manhyia Palace Museum had become the best tourist attraction in the Ashanti region and continued to attract visitors from within and outside the country. "The Museum has since 1997 been adjudged annually as the best visitors attraction of the year by the Ghana Tourist Board (GTB)," He added. Nana Frimpong Anokye 11, Agonahene said over 722 children had benefited from the Foundation's scholarship, 402 had their eyes screened and 500 economic trees planted. Other activities planned in connection with the anniversary celebrations include Public lectures and Asante Honour of Awards Night.

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