Poor road networks, impeding development of northern Ghana

The poor state of roads in the three northern regions is a major hindrance to the economic development of the area.

The roads in the Upper West, Upper East and Northern Regions are generally bad and as such business transactions are impeded while farmers are also unable to transport their produce to marketing centres to sell.

Kuoro Richard Babini Kanton VI, Paramount Chief of the Tumu, raised these concerns at the annual “Paari Gbielle” (Farmers Play) festival in Tumu on Saturday.

“Feeder roads and link roads leading to many of the communities that produce food stuffs are in deplorable state and the people are unable to travel to the district capitals to purchase farm inputs and other requirement during the rainy season.

“There is therefore the need for government to expedite action in the construction of roads to open up the communities so as to boost food production and promote the economic and livelihood fortunes of the people.

The Tumu-Kuoro called on the government to improve the Tumu-Bolgatanga and Tumu-Wa roads to help facilitate the movement of goods and services.

“Equal attention should also be given to the Tumu-Gwollu- Hamile road, Wa-Lawra-Nandom-Hamile road to open up the area to neighbouring Burkina Faso and Mali as well as the Sawla-Fufulso road to link the Upper West Region to the Northern Region”.

Kuoro Kanton however commended government for the many ongoing development projects in the Sissala East District and mentioned the tarring of the Tumu town roads, the construction of a bridge on River Sisili Bridge and school blocks in the various educational institutions as a plus for the government.

Government’s efforts to revamp the cotton industry, he said, was also another opportunity for farmers in the north to improve their economies and livelihoods and appealed to government to ensure that all obsolete  machines in the Tumu Cotton Ginnery were replaced to maximise the processing of cotton.

Kuoro Kanton said the old dam in the Tumu was silted and could no longer hold enough water to meet the demand of the population and pleaded with government to provide a new dam under the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) for domestic and irrigation use.

He entreated government to provide office accommodation for the Tumu Traditional Council to help enhance its operations.

Kuoro Kanton expressed concern about the deplorable state of the dinning hall of the Kanton Senior High School, describing it as not only being small to contain the students population but has also become more of a death trap to the students.

Kuoro Kanton announced that as part of his policy to promote peace and tranquillity in his traditional area, all vacant skins within his jurisdiction had been filled in accordance with the customs and traditions of the various communities.

He has also established Fulani leadership in the various localities across the paramountcy to encourage them to be law abiding to promote peaceful co-existence between them and the local people.

Alhaji Issahaque Salia, Upper West Regional Minister, who was the guest of honour in a speech read on his behalf, advised the people to carefully harness their rich customs and traditions to serve as source of revenue to improve their incomes.

He commended the Chiefs and people of the Tumu Traditional Area for planning to undertake more development projects and name them after prominent personalities whose contributions had brought development and progress to the people.

Alhaji Salia announced that SADA was on course and gave the assurance that the Wa-Tumu and Wa-Bolgatanga Roads would be tarred this year.

He said government has also launched the “White Gold” campaign in Tumu recently in a bid to revamp the cotton industry to help improve the income levels of cotton farmers in the district and urged them to embrace it.

The festival is a celebration agricultural success when the people offer thanks to Almighty Allah and their ancestors for the pumper harvest during the year and also plan for the next farming season as well as development projects within the period.

As the drum beats filled the air, the locals danced to the enthralling rhythms while the firing of musketry took the backstage.

People from the three northern regions and neighbouring Burkina Faso attended the festival.

Source: GNA

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