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Workshop held for Parliamentary Select Committee on Local Gov’t

A three day Workshop has been held for Members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Local Government and Rural Development, in Koforidua to develop and refine an annual work-plan and budget for the Committee.

The workshop supported by Star-Ghana was on the theme: “Strengthening Transparency, Accountability and Responsiveness in Ghana,” and aimed at providing a forum for reflecting on and updating participants’ knowledge of their responsibilities as legislators, particularly in the context of local governance.

It also sought to familiarize the Members of Parliament (MPs) with initiatives, reforms and challenges of decentralisation and local governance in Ghana.

Mr Akwasi Oppong-Fosu, Minister of Local Government and Rural Development,during the workshop, said over the last two decades, efforts at local governance and decentralisation had been key part of national policy.

“In 2009, the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD) embarked on a major drive to accelerate and deepen the drive towards local governance and decentralization,” he said.

He said that drive was part of the Ministry’s contribution towards the national effort at hastening the development efforts of the country by making it possible for the majority of the people to participate in the development process.

Local Governance: A reality

Mr Oppong-Fosu said, consequently, a number of initiatives were put in place to ensure that the drive to deepen local governance and decentralization was made a reality.

“In the past four years the Ministry has initiated a review of various pieces of legislation pertaining to local government and decentralization”.

He indicated that the purpose of those reviews was to provide the legal framework for deepening local government and decentralization.

“For instance LI 1961 has been put in place to give effect to agencies in the districts to become departments of the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) in furtherance of devolution at the district level,” Mr Oppong-Fosu.

“Also, LI 1967 has been passed to provide legal recognition to the sub-district governance structures, thereby giving meaning and effect to delegation as the third strand of the national decentralization policy”.

The Minister said government had also put in place various policies aimed at accelerating the pace of local governance and decentralization adding that in 2010, Cabinet gave approval to the National

Decentralization Policy Framework and its accompanying Action Plan designed and formulated by the Ministry.

He said the policy framework was adopted at a national consensus on the conceptual meaning of decentralization in Ghana.

Mr Oppong-Fosu said based on that consensus the policy framework reorganized the decentralization programme into coherent thematic areas that defined specific policies.

Some of the policies are: National Environment and Sanitation Policy, Local Economic Development Policy, Urban Development Policy, Street Naming and House Numbering Policy, and Public Private Partnership Policy Framework among others.

Mr Oppong-Fosu said the implementation of those policies required a bi-partisan approach from both sides of the House.

Mr Ibrahim Tanko Amidu, Programme Manager of Star-Ghana, said Parliament’s critical oversight and representation roles in Ghana’s governance arrangements could not be underscored.

He said the responsibility of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Local Government and Rural Development in ensuring Ghana’s sustainable growth and equitable service delivery was important given that Ghana had chosen to address poverty through a decentralised management approach.


Bia East MP supports rehabilitation of school block

Member of Parliament for Bia East, Richard Acheampong has supported a Junior High School in his constituency with building materials.

He donated 10 bags of cement and 4 packets of roofing sheets to the Baamoa Junior High School to be used in rehabilitation of the school block.

Speaking to Ghanamps.gov.gh, Hon. Richard Acheampong stated that the block which has its roof ripped off is in a dilapidated state that serves as a death threat to the students who use the facility.

He bemoaned the current state of the school block which he contended was not conducive for effective learning and noted this could negatively affect the quality of education in the area.

Hon. pledged to do everything possible within his power to ensure that education in his constituency receive a major boost to enable children become competent professionals in the future.

Kwadwo Anim/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Prez. Mahama will never stop live broadcast of court case – Markin

Member of Parliament for Effutu, Alex Afenyo Markin has said he would be hugely disappointed if President John Mahama influences the cancelation of the ongoing live telecast of the 2012 election petition at the Supreme Court.

He said, it would be in the supreme interest of the country to have this high profile case which has a potential of shaping the future of nation, aired live on television for all Ghanaians to follow and accept the final verdict.

The MP was commenting on media reports which alleged that a meeting involving President John Mahama, his counsel and other leading government functionaries was held during which the government realizing how the petitioners star witness has performed so far, resolved that the ongoing live broadcast be stopped with the excuse that it slowed productivity.

But speaking on e.tv’s Breakfast TV show, Hon. Alex Afenyo Markin expressed doubt over the supposed agenda of the said meeting, stating that he cannot fathom how and why President Mahama could issue such directive, when a huge majority of the nation was religiously following the case in court.

He said no excuse, neither administrative nor technical must be assigned for discontinuing the case and urged the government to give the state broadcaster all the necessary assistance to enable it air the proceedings live.

“Ghana Broadcasting Corporation which is the main station beaming the event live, must link up with the other TV stations so that in the event that their equipment develop any technical faults, Ghanaians will not be denied a live telecast ‘’ he said.

Kwadwo Anim/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Agona West MP distributes desks to basic schools

The Member of Parliament for Agona West Constituency in the Central Region, Hon. Charles Obeng-Inkoom has distributed dual and mono desks to some public and private basic schools to complement effort made to improve education in the area.

The MP, who disclosed this in an interview with GhanaMPs.gov.gh today, however confirmed that almost all public basic schools in the constituency had a fair share of the distribution, adding that some private schools also benefited from it.

He mentioned Catholic Junior High, Methodist and Presbyterian Primary Schools all located in Agona Abodom as some of the beneficiary schools.

Hon. Obeng-Inkoom however expressed confidence that the move will go a long way to improve teaching and learning and consequently raise education in the constituency to a preferred standard.

The legislator also used the opportunity to advise students in the various beneficiary schools to grab the advantage of what has been provided to them and focus much on their studies since they were the feature leaders of the country.

Meanwhile, the MP f added that the desks were procured with supports from the Ghana Education Trust fund (GETfund).

Emmanuel Frimpong Mensah/GhanaMPs.gov.gh

Bortianor MP registers 400 aged under NHIS

Member of Parliament for Bortianor Ngleshie Amanfro, Hon. Bright Edward Kodzo has funded the registration of 400 aged and youth at Farna and Tomefe communities under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to enable them access quality and free healthcare.

The communities located on an island could only be accessed by crossing a lake and since they had no health facility, residents were compelled to cross the lake, in transit, to Garlelia or other neighboring towns in order to access health facilities.

“These communities are not reachable by road so getting access to registration centres were very difficult for them, that’s why I took this bold initiative to bring the registration to their doorsteps,” the MP hinted.

He intimated that most of these people were not ready to register so in order to get them involve, he had to use his own money from his coffers to do it for them.

According to Hon. Kodzo, it cost him more than GHs1,600 to finance the registration exercise.

In a related development, Hon. Kodzo is currently touring his constituent to familiarize himself as well as interact with the towns folks to have first hand information of problems confronting them and the way to solve the problems.

Godwin Allotey Akweiteh/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Tamale Central MP counsels Bawumiah to focus on banking carrier

The Member of Parliament for Tamale Central, says the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Vice Presidential candidate in the 2012 election, Dr. Mahamadu Bawumiah will do himself a great deal of service if he concentrates on his banking carrier where his expertise lies rather than doing politics.

According to him, Dr. Bawumiah can best be described as a near disaster when it comes to politics as he has woefully failed to make any impact since he became the vice presidential candidate of the largest opposition party in both the 2008 and 2012 elections.

He made the point on Metro TV’s Good Morning Ghana show on Tuesday, while commenting on the appointment of Dr Mahamadu Bawumiah as the Head of the Uganda Office of the African Development Bank (AFDB).

The appointment was made last month and effective April 1, but according to AFDB policy, each staff is entitled to take special leave of absence.

He will co-ordinate and supervise the operations of the Bank in the country office for great portfolio efficiency and visibility on the ground.

Hon. Inusah Fuseini stated that Dr. Bawumia by his application for the new job exposes him as someone who loves his banking carrier than politics, adding that his poor showing at the ongoing election petition at the Supreme Court is evident that he’s not a good politician.

He added that though Dr. Bawumiah has failed to deliver as a politician, he is noted to be a fine Economist and Banker who has done a good job in his earlier international engagement in Zimbabwe and will hopefully deliver once small in Uganda.

Kwadwo Anim/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Sefwi Akontombra MP builds Teachers’ bungalows

In a bid to boost education through the provision of places of accommodation for teachers, the Member of Parliament for Sefwi Akontombra, Hon. Herod Conbbina is constructing Teachers quarters at Aburonahi and Chorochori.

The projects are currently at lintel level while a Teachers’ bungalow at Kramokrom and Tanokrom are completed and currently in use.

Speaking to Ghanamps.gov.gh. Hon. Herod Cobbina stated that the projects were funded with his share of the MPs common fund.

He expressed his commitment to ensure that teachers posted to areas in his constituencies which are rural in nature receive the best of conditions to enable them impact knowledge into the pupils.

Touching on Health, Hon. Cobbina disclosed that he is currently renovating the Nsawora Health Centre with his share of the National Health Insurance (NHIS) funds.

Additionally clinics are being constructed at Manukrom, Bawakrom and Aprutu to serve the health needs of the people.

Hon. Herod Cobbina further stated that to avoid indiscriminate defecation, he is currently building places of convenience which he terms ‘Household’ latrine for people of kofikrom and Accrakrom while the inhabitants are supporting the projects through communal labour.

Kwadwo Anim/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Assin North MP supports rainstorm victims

Member of Parliament for Assin North, Samuel Ambre has supported rainstorm victims in his constituency with roofing sheets at a short ceremony.

The natural occurrence which happened recently at Sienchem unfortunately recorded one casualty after a beam of a building hit a woman at the neck killing her in the process, while several others were displaced.

Speaking to Ghanamps.gov.gh, Hon. Samuel Ambre disclosed that he donated 35 packets of roofing sheets as his contribution to helping the victims reconstruct their houses.

He urged other benevolent organizations to come to the aid of the victims by presenting to them relief items to enable them find some shelter.

Hon. Ambre however urged the victims to endeavour to exercise precautionary measures whenever such natural occurrences happen.

Kwadwo Anim/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Dorma East MP embarks on ‘thank you’ tour

The Member of Parliament for Dorma East, Hon. William Kwasi Sabi is currently embarking on a thank you tour in his Constituency to commend them for voting massively for him in the December 2012 elections.

He had so far visited more than 7 towns including Dorma Akwamu, Akontanim, Asuotiano, Kyeremasu, Wemfie among others to familiarize himself and also have first hand information of problems confronting them and interact with them on measures to the solve such issues.

Hon. Sabi said, most of the places he had visited complained of bad road networks adding that in the Wemfie town for instance, the people complained bitterly of the deplorable nature of the road network connecting their farms saying that it becomes immotorable especially during the rainy season which made it difficult for them to ply to harvest their produce to marketing centres.

Hon. Sabi making this information known to Ghanamps.gov.gh, said visiting the constituency was his responsibility and also to use the opportunity to make his good intentions known to them for accelerated development.

Godwin Allotey Akweiteh/Ghanamps.gov.gh

Mahama And NDC Are Intimidating Me

Member of Parliament for Assin Central constituency of the Central Region, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong says he is being intimidated by President John Mahama and some leading members in governing National Demoratic Party (NDC).

Mr. Kennedy Agyapong said he had been receiving many text messages and calls on his mobile phone threatening his life, after the December 2012 general elections.

Speaking Saturday April 20, 2013, on Nhyira Fm’s weekly analysis programme dubbed “Kukurantumi” Mr. Agyapong stated, his continuing appearance in court over his alleged tribal comments prior to the elections, is making life unbearable for him since the case taken major part of his daily activities.

He avowed to face any member of the ruling party who attempts to confront him.

But in a quick a rebuttal, MCE for Ejisu-Juabeng Municipal Assembly, Afrifa Yamoah Ponkoh who called into the programme described the statement as “unfortunate”.

Mr. Yamoah Ponkoh said the claims by the MP that he was being haunted by supporters of the NDC could not be true. He urged Mr. Agyapong to desist from making comments that have the potential to destroy the peace of the country.

Kennedy Agyapong is facing two charges of provocation of riot and offensive conduct for allegedly declaring war on Ewe and Ga ethnic groups of the Volta and Greater Accra Regions respectively.

He allegedly made the call during a phone-in segment of a programme on Oman FM, a private radio station owned by media company, Kencity Media Limited.