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General News of Monday, 25 February 2008

Source: GNA

Creation of dew districts is to enhance governance

Accra, Feb. 25, GNA - Mr. Kwadwo Adjei-Darko, Minister of Local Government, Rural Development and Environment, on Monday explained that the creation of new districts was based on the Local Government Act (Act 462) to enhance governance and development in the country.

He explained that according to the Act, the President by Executive Instrument may declare any area a district and assign a name. The Electoral Commission's role in the creation of a new district, he said, was to assist in defining electoral boundaries. Mr Adjei-Darko gave the explanation in an interview with the Ghana News Agency when he reacted to criticisms and comments from the public about the recent creation of new districts.

He said under the legislative instrument, the Minister's role centred around the name and area of authority, number of persons to be elected and appointed, places where offices were to be situated, among others.

The Minister pointed out that nowhere in the law is it stated that the Electoral Commission has to determine where district capitals are to be sited.

"The EC can assist the Minister to take decisions on the citing of the district capitals to enhance the electoral process." Mr Adjei-Darko said the EC's duty was to help define electoral boundaries, emphasizing that the law did not say that the EC should have a role to play.

He said the creation of any new district was aimed at bringing governance closer to the people and to hasten development and urged people in the various districts to be more concerned with the type of people they elected to represent their interest. "People should also be concerned with the monitoring of activities by their district. Communities should get more interested in the work of the District Assembly."

Mr Adjei-Darko appealed to assemblies to ensure that development in the districts is evenly distributed.

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