IT is rare for traditional councils in the Ashanti Region to hold public forums to discuss measures to improve development in their areas.
However, the Manso Nkwanta Traditional Council, under the able leadership of Nana Bi-Kusi Appiah, the Omanhene, has taken a giant step in organising a successful public forum at which many ideas for getting the best for the Amansie West District came up.
Amansie West is a deprived district with various challenges. Many of the roads are bad, several schools are in deplorable conditions and health facilities are not the best.
It was to address those and other challenges that the traditional council initiated the public forum to discuss how to reverse the rot in the area.
The forum was attended by the District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Charles Oti Prempeh and the Member of Parliament (MP) for the area, Mrs Grace Addo, and heads of departments in the district, including education, environment, health and sanitation.
Nana Appiah said at the forum that it was important for the people to meet to discuss their development because the area deserved to move away from its present poor state.
He commended the departmental heads for their contributions to the development of the district and assured them of the traditional council’s support for them to deliver.
The Omanhene called on parents to invest in their children through education instead of using their little resources on unprofitable ventures.
Nana Appiah called for unity between the DCE and the MP so that together they could lead the district to achieve the expected development.
The District Director of Education, Mr Samuel Kena, stated that educational standard was gradually improving, adding the district recorded 77.7 per cent in the 2009 Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) as against 64.4 per cent in 2008.
He, however, expressed concern about the number of untrained teachers in the district, which numbered 800 as against 400 trained teachers.
Most of the teachers in the district have no decent accommodation, a situation that must be addressed to attract qualified teachers to the district.
Amansie West has only one hospital, 20 health centres and five clinics with five doctors, two medical assistants and 20 midwives.
This is one of the highest in the region but the situation is attributed to the presence of the Millennium Villages Project (MVP), which receives external support from the UN.
The District Director of Health Services, Mr Joseph Adomako, said HIV/AIDS was on the increase in the district.
He stated that the UN, in collaboration with the MVP, was supporting the district with funds to undertake educational programmes on the disease as a way of reducing its spread.
In his remarks, the DCE said through the District Assemblies’ Common Fund, the assembly had been able to complete a number of development projects started by the previous government.