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27.05.2006 General News

VEEP urges chiefs to release lands for dev't

By GNA

Bolgatanga, May 26, GNA - Vice President Alhaji Aliu Mahama, on Friday started his five-day official tour of the Upper East Region with a call on the chiefs and people to liberalise land tenure system to facilitate Government's investment drive.

"If we want to fight poverty, then chiefs must provide land to people who want to invest in this country," he said when interacting with chiefs and community opinion leaders in the region.

Speaking during a courtesy call on the Bolga Naba Martin Abilba III, Paramount Chief of Bolgatanga Traditional Area, he said even though land was one of Ghana's greatest assets, inaccessibility to the facility and the disputes associated with it had become a major hindrance to local investments.

"When we fight, we kill each other and we become poorer," he said. The five-day official visit has already taken the Vice President to the Bulk Oil Storage (BOST) facilities at Kalbeo, near Bolgatanga, the Ghana Cotton Ginnery at Balungu and the revamped Pwalugu Tomato Factory where he interacted with the workers.

Vice President Aliu asked workers of BOST to use dialogue to resolve all industrial disputes instead of resorting to actions that could undermine the smooth execution of the project scheduled for completion in September this year.

He also warned them against tampering with pipelines that had been laid to convey petroleum products from Buipe in the Northern Region to the BOST facility for onward transportation by road to other parts of the region, Upper West Region, neighbouring Burkina Faso, Mali and other landlocked countries within the West African Sub-Region.

The Bolga Naba, Martin Abilba lauded the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) for spreading development evenly throughout the country. He called on the people to throw their weight behind the NPP to keep the government in power for at least 25 years to enable it carry through its developmental agenda, adding "It is a shame that the Party has no representation from the Bolgatanga Municipality in Parliament." Vice President Aliu is expected to interact with District Chief Executives and inaugurate Metro Mass Transport Buses in Bolgatanga. He would also participate in the Centenary Celebration of the Tamale Ecclesiastical Province of the Catholic Church at Navrongo on Sunday May 28.

The theme for the celebration is "The Church as a Family."

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