IT is very difficult for an area to see any appreciable development if there is conflict between the traditional and political authorities.
In areas where unity exists, cross fertilisation of ideas have resulted in accelerated development to the benefit of the people.
That is why the Ahafo Ano North District has come far in the last couple of years with regard to development.
Today, the Omanhene of Tepa Traditional Area, Nana Adusei Atwenewa Ampem, has released 60 acres for the construction of a new hospital for the district capital, Tepa, to which the district authorities are very grateful.
The Omanhene has persistently drummed home the fact that a chief who refuses to lead his people to development cannot claim to be a good chief.
According to him, Ahafo-Ano North deserves the best in everything because of its position in political and traditional development.
Ahafo-Ano North District is one of the oldest districts in the Ashanti Region. It used to be part of the vast Ahafo-Ano District until the erstwhile provisional National Defence Council (PNDC) government divided it into two, Ahafo-Ano North and Ahafo Ano South.
The idea behind the breaking of the former district into two was to facilitate accelerated development.
For the benefit of the uninitiated, the Ahafo area cuts through the Ashanti and Brong Ahafo regions.
In 1959, the Convention People’s Party (CPP) government of the late Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah, cut off part of Ahafo to join the Brongs to form the Brong Ahafo Region.
Ahafo-Ano North thus remains a very important part of the Ashanti Region, contributing immensely to the growth of the regional economy.
The area abounds in cocoa, timber and food crops. During the late General Acheampong's era, the government constructed a cocoa clinic at the district capital in honour of cocoa farmers in the area.
In spite of the important position the district occupies in national development, not much was done in the past to shore up its development.
Indeed, before the New Patriotic Party (NPP) took over the reins of government in 2001, the only tarred road in the district was the one that formed part of the main Tepa Junction–Goaso main road.
All the other roads connecting to the district capital were in bad shape and it was an eyesore when the rains set in. Food crops were made to rot in the bush to the disadvantage of the poor farmers as a result of the deplorable roads.
Tepa, the district capital, lacked a number of social amenities to befit one
of the oldest district capitals in the country. Not even a modern market existed in the town.
Today, however, things are changing for the better, bringing some hope to the people. As a result of government initiatives, a number of feeder roads are now in good shape even though there is a lot more to do.
One major road that is receiving serious attention is the one linking Dwaho with Twabidi. The road is ready for tarring and the contractor is working on it at a fast rate.
The District Chief Executive (DCE), Nana Eric Agyemang Prempeh, said in an interview that the road was very dear to the hearts of the people of the region and was happy that the government had tackled it.
The Akwasiase–Manfo road has also been added to the new cocoa road project for tarring and very soon, contractors would move to the site.
Although, there has been a significant improvement in the road sector, some other roads in the district are still crying for rehabilitation. One of such roads is the Anyinasuso–Betiako road. Even though the DCE said the road had been awarded on contract, the contractor had abandoned work.
According to him, the recent rains had made some of the roads impassable resulting in quantities of foodstuffs getting rotten in the bush. Many schools have also been constructed across the district.
Education, as widely accepted, is the key to development and anyone who neglects it does so at his or her peril. That is why over the past seven years, the district assembly and the government have pumped in more funds to undertake massive construction of school blocks across the district.
The district assembly for instance, has continuously allocated a chunk of its government's educational initiatives is the Tepa Senior High School.
Serious work has been done to improve infrastructure with specific reference to the construction of a two-storey administration block.
Water is life, as the saying goes. It is against this background that the district assembly, the government and other development partners continue to take action towards addressing the water problems facing the people.
In this regard, a GH¢700,000 small towns water project for Akwasiase has been awarded on contract to add up to the existing facilities in some other communities.
But the problem of buruli ulcer still remains a threat to some communities including Achiawkrom.
Expectations are that the coming years will see further improvement in all spheres of the district.