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General News of Wednesday, 27 June 2018


Creation of new regions: EC fully funded for referendum - Dan Botwe

Government says it has made funds available in the 2018 budget for the holding of a referendum for the creation of new regions in Ghana.

Minister for Regional Reorganisation Dan Botwe told Joy News the Electoral Commission is ready to conduct the referendum.

He was speaking a day after government accepted the recommendation of the Justice Stephen Brobbey-led commission of enquiry to create additional regions.

In all six new regions will be created bringing the total number of administrative regions to 16, a number some critics say will be a drain on the country’s meagre resources.

The six new regions are Western North, Bono East, Ahafo, Savannah, North East and Oti Region.

However, at least 50 percent participation of registered voters in the proposed areas must vote with an endorsement of 80 percent to seal the creation of the new regions.

Dan Botwe is hoping for a smooth take of in the referendum.

“We have been in touch with the Electoral Commission since last year. We reminded them of the project and we requested them to submit a budget and it was in their budget for 2018,” he said.

Beyond the provision of funds, the minister said they have met with the EC technical team who has given the assurance that all is set for the referendum.

There is, however, mixed reactions to government’s decision to create six new regions.

In the Volta region, some citizens in the southern part of that region were opposed to the proposal.

Some of the residents told Joy News’ correspondent Ivy Setordzie the new regions will not change anything.

“Development depends on who is leading. If you assess the history of this region you will realize that majority of the people in management were from the southern part of the region and they diverted the development to the southern part of the country,” one of the residents said.

Another resident would rather have development and policies implemented in areas that have been abandoned for years, stressing, the new regions will amount to nothing if there is no conscious decision to develop some areas.

However, some of the residents were happy with the decision to create the new regions.