By Hayford O-Akrofi, GNA
Accra, Sept. 14, GNA – The Ablekuma North Municipal Assembly is endowed with huge economic and human resources that need sustained efforts to transform to bring the needed improvements in the lives of the its people.
It is therefore incumbent upon the assembly to economically empower the many youth and entrepreneurial members to enhance the living standards of the people.
Mr Kofi Ofori, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) stated this during the first Community Needs Assessment Forum for seven electoral areas in the municipality towards the preparation of the 2018-2021 Medium Term Development Plan (MTDP) for the assembly.
The two-day fora which were held separately for Sakaman, Otaten and Odorkor electoral areas on one side, and Kwashieman, Darkuman East, Darkuman West and Awoshie on other, brought together assembly members, traditional rulers, religious leaders, members of identifiable groups and artisans as well as heads of departments.
Even though Mr. Ofori acknowledged that the task ahead for the development of the newly created municipality was a herculean one, he was of the belief that ‘’the resolve to see an enviable striving municipality should spur all stakeholders on to overcome all envisaged constraints and challenges’’.
He said the municipality which was carved out of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) had a limited period during the public hearing on community needs which will invariably form the basis of the assembly’s MTDP for 2018-2021.
Mr. Ofori said by law, the assembly was required to engage the public throughout the plan preparation processes in order to make it participatory and legitimate hence the forum.
The MCE expressed worry about the poor sanitation conditions in the municipality and asked for effective and innovative strategies that could be adopted to overcome the challenges and improve upon the situation.
During the public discourse, all stakeholders were unanimous that some of the major problems confronting the electoral areas included serious drainage challenges resulting in the flooding of most areas any time there was a downpour, poor road network, lack of street lights in certain areas, indiscriminate dumping of garbage especially into drains culminating in choked gutters and insanitary conditions as well as lack of markets and lorry stations.
Taking the stakeholders through steps in preparing the MTDP, Hajiah Mamata Musah Sheriff, a Development Planning Officer of the assembly said the forum was the first in the series of three public hearings to take place.
Hajiah Sheriff said after the first one which was basically consultative in nature to collate the concerns of stakeholders from the various electoral areas, a second one would be held to confirm whether the views collated reflected what the stakeholders expressed during the first public hearings.
Finally, she said a third one would be held for a draft copy to be shown to them before taking it to the assembly’s general meeting for adaptation and approval and onward transmission to the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) through the Regional Co-ordinating Council (RCC).GNA