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President inspects health college and cocoa rehabilitation projects in Western North Region

President Akufo Addo, on Wednesday inspected the 2.9-million-cedi lecture hall and office project for the Bibiani Health College.

He also inspected hectares of farms under the National Cocoa rehabilitation Programme, undertaken by the Cocoa Health and Extension Division of COCOBOD at Sefwi-Bekwai in the Western North Region.

The Heath college projects funded by the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation Foundation are expected to be completed in 2020 to increase enrollment of interested individuals and youth into the health care profession.

Ms Stella Sarpomaa Oppong, the Principal of the College said the construction of the new facility was a big relief to meet the ever-growing enrollment of the school.

Currently, the old facility can only accommodate 210, and is believed to absorb over 600 students when the February 2020 deadline is adhered to.

The President who started his two-day visit to the new region, also made a stopover at the project site of the Cocoa Extension Division of the COCOBOD, where numerous diseased cocoa trees were cut under the cocoa rehabilitation projects.

The rehabilitation project has a composite plan of destroying most swollen shoot affected plants from roots, preparing the land for cultivation of hybrid seedlings, economic seedlings and plantain surplus as well as compensation for affected farmers and landowners.

Mr Boahene Aidoo, the Chief Executive Officer of the COCOBOD who took the President round the farms said the move was to enable the country increase yields and regain the position as leading producers of quality cocoa beans across the world.

He said the disease had no remedy and that a survey conducted showed that over 300,000 trees were affected particularly in the Western North.

The CEO told the President that the Region had most of its trees affected, necessitating the cutting of most of them under the government intervention programme with a two-year preparation plan.

According to him, negotiations were far advanced with the African Development Bank for funds for the project and therefore encouraged all affected farmers to support the project.

Later, the chiefs and people of Sefwi-Wiawso hosted the President at a durbar at the Palace of Nana Katakye Kwesi Bumagama II, the Omanhene for Sefwi-Bekwai traditional.

The President described the day as a joyful occasion for him to interact with the people of the area under his yearly Regional visit plan, “I am delighted to start my Regional interaction from this new Region and I assure you that I will work hard in maintaining a befitting Region”.

He appreciated the Patience and endurance of the People to see that their long-term dream of having a new Region came to pass and prayed that they continue to support his administration in providing the development needs of the people.

“God bless you for a peaceful referendum. We have a new land for the administrative offices and I will personally go there to inspect the site.”

“The core staff for the running of the Regional Coordinating Council plus eight new vehicles have been provided as initial…do good and credible work to merit the admiration of all,” the President entreated.

The President said under the Sino-Hydro pact, some of the road networks within the Region would be fixed especially Sefwi-Wiawso, Akontombra, Enchi and Elubo roads”.

“A 13.6 million Waiawso towns roads are also awarded on contract…”Nananom, I will never go asleep on your needs, I am working hard for your development”.

The President called for a peaceful co-existence between the Western North and the Western Region to engender massive development within the two regions.

The Chiefs and Queenmothers of the Area presented the President with a special seat and Title named: “Oseadieyo” literally- the one who fulfils his promises.

Accompanying the President were; Mr Joe Ghartey, Minister for Railways Development, Mr. Aboagye Gyedu, the Minister for Western North, Nana Ato Arthur, head of Local Government Service among other high-profile Government functionaries.

Nana Bumagama was grateful for the creation of the Region and encouraged his subjects to bear and continue to have faith in the government as he provided all needed facilities befitting a new Region.

The Paramount Chief reminded the President of the need to fix most of the terrible road networks within the Area.

He mentioned the significant contribution of Alex Tetteh, Deputy Minister, Western North to the development of the area, “Tetteh has demonstrated that it is not only Sefwi citizens that can help our development”.

Mr Dan Botwe, the Minister for Regional Re-organisation said two years ago, the government mooted for the creation of the additional regions and lauded the support of the Western North Region for holistically supporting the project.

“We are grateful for the total support…you have demonstrated that indeed you cherish the peace the country is enjoying, very soon, the needed officers would be posted for a smooth take off”.

Nana Ato Arthur, later, introduced the core management team for the running of the new Region.

Source: GNA

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