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18.11.2005 Regional News

Five-year economic devt programme for 12 cities and towns

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Kasoa (C/R), Nov. 18, GNA- Accra and selected towns in the country are to benefit from a five-year socio-economic development programme initiated by the government under the Urban Poverty Reduction Programme (UPRP).

Beneficiary towns are Akyem-Oda, Agogo, Apam, Agona-Swedru, Ho, Kasoa, Kumasi, Koforidua, Tema and Wenchi.

More than 14 million dollars had been earmarked for the programme and organisations assisting government to finance it included, the African Development Bank (ADB), and the Social Investment Fund (SIF). Mr Solomon Kwashie Abbam-Quaye, District Chief Executive for Awutu-Effutu-Senya, announced this at a forum at Kasoa on Thursday. The meeting was designed to educate participants including chiefs, traders, transport operators, assembly members, unit committees, area, town and urban council members in the area on the importance of the programme and the need for them to embrace it.

It afforded stakeholders who participated to share ideas and also helped officials of the district administration who organised the forum to gather suggestions needed for the smooth implementation of the programme.

Addressing them, Mr Abbam-Quaye charged people in the area to iron out land and other social issues that could impede the smooth implementation of the programme because the essence of the programme was to generate more income for the private business operators and create adequate employment for the unemployed people in the area.

Mr. Abbam-Quaye announced that 38 income-generating projects would be established in Kasoa under the five-year Urban Poverty Reduction programme.

These include, a multi-purpose modern super market complex with a lorry park to serve metro transport operators, a kindergarten, and a recreational centre, among others.

Under the programme the Awutu-Effutu-Senya District Assembly will also construct an abattoir to promote the work of butchers in Kasoa and also improve conditions of streets in the community. Mr Abbam-Quaye asked custodians of Kasoa lands to release adequate lands for the successful implementation of projects envisaged under the programme.

He said the implementation of the programme would assist reduce poverty in and around the fast-growing commercial town. Mr. Joseph Yaw Owusu-Kwarteng, Public Relations Officer of the Awutu-Effutu-Senya District Mutual Health Insurance Scheme (AESDMHIS), appealed to chiefs and other stakeholders in the area to help educate people who have not as yet registered with scheme to register to help them source affordable healthcare when the scheme takes off. During question time some of the participants expressed their appreciation to the government for selecting Kasoa as one of the beneficiary cities and towns and hoped that projects planned for the town would be implemented as promised without any delay.

Dr. Justice Kow Abraham, Chairman of Kasoa Urban Council, who presided over the forum, called for co-operation and mutual understanding from the people to ensure the success of the programme. Dr Abraham said members of the Urban Council would play their parts well to make the programme achieve the desired results when it takes off in March next year.

The Kasoa District Police Commander, Chief Superintendent Charles Adalong, and Mr Justice Wilson, the District Magistrate for Awutu-Effutu-Senya, strongly advised landowners and prospective developers in the area to always ensure decent land transactions to avoid litigations on lands.

Chief Superintendent Adalong demonstrated new types of deadly weapons armed robbers in the area had invented to the participants and asked them to spread the information to their relatives, friends and other neighbours as their contribution towards safeguarding the interest of innocent and law-abiding citizens.

According to the Police Commander, the robbers now tie sharp pen-knives to long sticks which they have devised and use it to stab their victims to death and later break into their rooms and steal their properties.

He said attempts made recently by some armed robbers in parts of Kasoa with their newly-invented weapon failed when the victim suddenly woke up from his sleep and raised an alarm.

Chief Superintendent Adalong said the weapon had been handed over to the Kasoa police for further investigation.

Mr Justice Wilson said almost 90 per cent of cases brought before him were land cases, adding that this does not augur well for effective maintenance of law and order and the promotion of peace and socio-economic development.

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