In fulfillment of Section 191(1) of the Local Governance Act, 2016 Act 936 which states, “The Regional Co-ordinating Council shall meet at least twice a year and shall hold any other meetings that the Council considers necessary at the times and in places determined by the Chairperson,” the Volta Regional Co-ordinating Council held its second and last meeting of the year on Wednesday, 18th December, 2019 at the Residency Conference Hall, Ho.
Participants included a number of Municipal/District Chief Executives, two representatives of the Regional House of Chiefs, and Regional Heads of Department, Agency and Service.
As the Chairperson of the Co-ordinating Council, the Hon. Regional Minister, Dr. Archibald Yao Letsa, addressed the Council and stated that the Region had witnessed significant achievements across all sectors within three years of the administration of New Patriotic Party led by the President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo.
He used the address to update the Council Members on general development in the Region among which were the following:
Some outstanding chieftaincy and land disputes in some communities posed security threat to the peace of the region and continued to engage the attention of the Regional Security Council (RESEC).
The purported declaration of independence by the infamous Homeland Study Group Foundation as well as its activities had been swiftly contained, and arrests made.
Dr. Letsa was grateful to the National Security, RESEC, and the Security Services in the Region, the Municipal/District Security Councils and the Regional Peace Council for ensuring that all conflicts had been well contained to secure the prevailing peace in the Region.
b. PRESIDENTIAL TOUR
The Hon. Regional Minister indicated that the President of the Republic of Ghana embarked on a 2-Day Official Tour of the Region on 4th and 5th November 2019.
The tour enabled the President to interact with chiefs, students, identifiable groups and the general public to learn at first hand some of the challenges confronting the Region.
c. VOLTA TRADE, INVESTMENT AND CULTURAL FAIR Cultural Fair.
The Council organised the above Fair at the Ho Sports Stadium from 22nd November to 1st December 2019 to promote agriculture, food production, agro-based industries and tourism in the Region.
d. 35TH NATIONAL FARMERS’ DAY CELEBRATION.
Dr. Letsa stated the Region successfully hosted the 35th National Farmers’ Day Celebration at the Jubilee Park, Ho from 2nd to 6th December 2019 under the theme, “Enhancing Small Scale Agriculture towards Agribusiness Development”.
The Opening Ceremony of the Celebration was graced by His Excellency Alhaji Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, the Vice President of the Republic of Ghana, while His Excellency, Nana Akufo Addo, the President of the Republic of Ghana graced the Grand Durbar and Award Ceremony.
e. ROAD NETWORK
The Hon. Regional Minister intimated that government had allocated funds for the construction and rehabilitation of most of the roads across the Region and work was progressing steadily at the various sites. He revealed that soon the deplorable state of the roads would improve to bring relief to our people.
f. GOVERNMENT FLAGSHIP PROGRAMMES
1. Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ)
Dr. Letsa acknowledged that the PFJ was making a significant impact on the lives of many farmers and people in the Region. I indicated that there had been a major increase in crop cultivation.
He stated that the Region received the hybrid seed maize (52.97 Metric Tonnes) OPV seed maize (29.008 Metric Tonnes) and seed rice (20.58 Metric Tonnes)
The region also received and distributed NPK and Urea fertilizers, tomato seeds, onion seeds, carrot seeds and cucumber seeds to farmers according to Dr. Letsa.
2. FREE SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL
Dr. Letsa made it known that Senior High Schools in the Region were benefiting from the implementation of the Free SHS Education Policy.
He indicated that 29 Senior High Schools were operating the double track system of the Free SHS programme, and 37,454 students were admitted for the 2018/2019 academic year as against 36,171 for the 2017/2018 academic year.
Also, he indicated that government had awarded contracts for the construction of 17 emergency facilities for some selected SHS in the Region to improve the infrastructure situation in the schools. The projects were at various stages of completion.
In addition, as at 9th December 2019, the Hon. Regional Minister stated 16 more projects (contracts) were awarded.
He was optimistic that the completion of the above emergency projects would improve the infrastructure situation in the schools and facilitate effective teaching and learning
Dr. Letsa concluded his address with an appreciation of the Regional House of Chiefs, Regional Security Council, Municipal/District Assemblies and other stakeholders for their continuous support for the Council while stating that the Council would collaborate with other stakeholders to continue to create the necessary conducive atmosphere for the people of the Region to go about their socio-economic activities devoid of any threats.
Public Relations Unit.