FIFTEEN outstanding citizens of the Afigya Kwabre District of the Ashanti Region have been honoured at the district’s first homecoming ceremony held at Kodie, the district capital, on Easter Monday.
Among them were the Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mrs Betty Mould-Iddrisu, the former first Lady, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, Mr Yaw Boadu Ayeboafoh, General Manager (Newspapers) of the Graphic Communications Group Limited, Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah, Member of Parliament (MP) for Afigya Sekyere West, Mr Emmanuel Owusu-Ansah, MP for Afigya Kwabre, and Mr Akenten Appiah-Menkah, an industrialist.
They were presented with certificates of recognition for portraying a positive image of the district to the outside world.
The homecoming organised by the district assembly in conjunction with the chiefs on the theme:, “Mobilising human resources for socio-economic development,” was meant to showcase the development potential of the district and plan the establishment of a rural bank for the area.
Speaking at the ceremony, Mrs Iddrisu described the event as very important, taking into consideration the challenges facing the district since its establishment about two years ago.
She said the district had people of vision in all spheres of national life and it was important they came together to chart a common path towards its development.
The minister said if they were able to unite for development, the district would be a force to reckon with.
She appealed to the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to go to the aid of the district in addressing some of the challenges in the road sector.
The deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr Elvis Afriyie-Ankrah, said it was an achievement for a new district to organise a well-attended homecoming event and expressed the hope that immense benefits would come out of the event.
He stated that the level of development in every locality was related to its human resource and therefore, stressed the need for the people to help develop the potential of the youth in the area.
“As a government, we are also investing in the people so that the nation can reap maximum results from its people,” Mr Afriyie-Ankrah added.
He observed the difficulties confronting the district assembly as a result of the inability of the previous government to put certain infrastructure in place before the creation of the district.
Mr Afriyie-Ankrah disclosed that under the government’s district resourcing project, 30 districts created by the previous government would be assisted with various projects to reduce their burden.
The deputy minister stated that the government was also taking agriculture seriously and that 1,000 additional tractors had been imported from India to support the development of agricultural in the country.
The District Chief Executive, Mr Kaakyire Oppong Kyekyeku, who received praises from virtually all other speakers for his unifying and development initiatives, said the creation of the district was accompanied with many difficulties.
He noted with concern that even the district’s first allocation of the District Assemblies Common Fund was sent to another district before it was returned to the district.
Mr Oppong Kyekyeku said the decision to establish a rural bank for the district was very important because it would help accelerate the development of the area.
The DCE expressed regret that the district assembly operated from a filling station because of lack of offices, and stated that the assembly had initiated the construction of a new district headquarters building with funds from the common fund.
For his part, Mr Boadu-Ayeboafoh challenged the people to work without politics, stressing “If we are able to do this, the sky will be the limit for us as a district”.
He said posterity would not forgive the present generation if “we don’t chart a path of progress”.
Other speakers included Mr Owusu-Ansah, the MP for Afigya Kwabre, Mr Kusi Appiah, the Ashanti Regional Co-ordinating Director and Mr Appiah-Minkah.