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07.04.2006 Business & Finance

Establishment of a palm oil factory soon

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Twifo-Praso, April 07, GNA- Mr Isaac Edumadze, Central Regional Minister, on Thursday said a palm oil factory would be established in the region soon to process palm fruits for export to the West African market. He did not disclose site for the factory, but said plans were underway to acquire land for an oil palm plantation and construction of the factory.

Mr Edumadze announced this when addressing a People's assembly forum at Twifo-Praso, on efforts being made the Government to enhance socio-economic development of the country.

The theme for the forum was "Positive Change Chapter Two - Accelerating Development, Deepening Good Governance." Participants at the forum that included chiefs, heads of departments, assembly members, students and the public discussed provision of electricity, potable water, employment, roads and payment of compensation on lands acquired by Government.

Mr Edumadze said the region would also serve as sources of raw materials for a sunflower and cashew-processing factory to be established at Tema, by OLAM a cocoa buying company. He told the people that provision of development projects in the region and nation-wide was on course and road networks had "improved tremendously" while provision of potable water had increased from 46 per cent to 51.7 per cent.

The Regional Minister gave the assurance that provision of potable water in the region would improve soon, and expressed concern about the attitude of some Ghanaians to appreciate efforts by the Government to improve upon the standard of living in the country.

He said Government policies and programmes had reduced rate of inflation from 40 per cent to 12 per cent, created 54 new businesses and initiated the construction of 855 houses for workers.

Reacting to a concern by a physically disabled person about lack of access facilities for them to public buildings, Mr Edumadze appealed to Municipal and district assemblies to ensure that such facilities were provided even at public places of convenience.

Professor Dominic Fobih, Minister for Lands, Forestry and Mines, called on traditional rulers to help create land banks in the region, to facilitate investments and said a committee would be established to liaise with the Regional Houses of Chiefs to facilitate the project. Mr Samuel Agyeibi-Kessie, Lower Twifo-Heman Denkyirah District Chief Executive, said about 55,169 persons had so far registered with the District Mutual Health Insurance Scheme and 2,310 of them had received their ID cards.

He said 375 million cedis was realised as premiums and urged those who had not registered to do so.

Mr Agyeibi-Kessie said with the introduction of the Capitation grant, enrolment in basic schools had increased by 5,610, and this was a challenge to the assembly to provide more classrooms. He announced that five communities within the district, had been selected to participate in the school feeding programme and urged parents to take advantage of the programme and send their children to school.