President John Dramani Mahama has announced a $450-million package for the rehabilitation of roads in cocoa-growing areas in the country.
He said, the amount, to be released in three installments of $150 million annually, would be used to finance selected roads in the Ashanti, Western, Eastern and Brong-Ahafo Regions, under the Cocoa Roads Rehabilitation Project being funded through the Ghana COCOBOD.
President Mahama made the announcement at a grand durbar to climax the Dormaa Kwafie Festival and the 15th joint anniversary celebration of the enstoolment of Osagyefo Oseadeeyo Agyemang Badu the Second, and Odeneho Akosua Fima Dwabeng the Second, as Paramount Chief and Queen respectively of the Dormaa Traditional Area, at Dormaa-Ahenkro.
The Kwafie biennial festival was last celebrated by the chiefs and people of Dormaa in 2002, and it is an occasion to bring natives of the area together as families and individuals to review the past, resolve their differences, and strategize ahead to enhance their socio-economic development.
The event on the theme: “Anniversary of Peace, Development and Distinguished Leadership, ” was attended by people from all walks of life, including politicians, traditional leaders, the Media and indigenes of Dormaa, both home and abroad.
President Mahama gave the assurance that the Dormaa Traditional Area would be included in the project, adding that soon the five-kilometre Dormaa-Ahenkro township roads, would be upgraded, while Dormaa-Ahenkro-Nkrankwanta, Dormaa-Ahenkro-Kwame Asua and other Feeder Roads, would all be incorporated.
On poultry industry in the area, the President said through the Export Development and Agricultural Investment Fund (EDAIF), Poultry farmers would be assisted financially to grow their businesses, adding that government would also meet the Minister of Food and Agriculture to consider the building of a befitting Municipal Veterinary Office with required machines and equipment to enhance Veterinary Services.
He commended Mr. Godwin Asubonteng, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for his hard work, and cited particularly, the construction of a 40-bed ward at the Dormaa Presbyterian Hospital and also the building of a 100-bed hostel facility at the Dormaa Midwifery Training School by the Municipal Assembly.
Earlier in an address, Osagyefo Agyemang Badu said in modern Ghana, traditional authorities were no more engaged in war of conquest for territorial expansion and development, but rather initiated developmental projects to augment the efforts of central government.
The paramount chief therefore urged Ghanaians of diverse capabilities to rally behind the government for effective implementation of its policies towards the realization of national development objectives.
He cited that projects undertaken during his era were in the areas of the provision of sanitation, education and health facilities, as well as sports development, mentioning the formation and financing of the Aduana Stars Football Club (FC) by the Dormaa Traditional Council that has become a formidable and winsome club side contending with Ghanaian giant clubs like “Porcupine Warriors” Kumasi Asante Kotoko and Accra Hearts of Oak.
Osagyefo Agyemang Badu expressed worry about high interest rates being charged by the Banks and other financial institutions in the country, and therefore appealed to President Mahama to intervene for relatively lower but reasonable interest rates for the benefit of farmers and small-scale business enterprises.
Oseadeeyo Akumfi Ameyaw the Fourth, Paramount Chief of Techiman, who presided, commended Nana Agyemang Badu for his achievements in the past 15 years, noting that his sterling and exemplary leadership had brought about tremendous developments in the Dormaa Traditional Area.