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General News of Tuesday, 24 August 2021

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

If creating new regions was easy, why didn’t you do it? – Dan Botwe chides Mahama

Dan Botwe, the Minister of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development Dan Botwe, the Minister of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development

• John Mahama accused government of not investing in the new regions

Dan Botwe says 96 projects are being undertaken in the six new regions

• He says John Mahama is not being candid with Ghanaians

Dan Botwe, the Minister of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development has expressed shock at a statement made by former President John Dramani Mahama over the creation of new regions.

Dan Botwe speaking on Okay FM on Monday, August 23 said that he was taken aback by John Mahama’s comment that creating a new region was a mere formality.

He criticized Mahama for not being objective on the issue and questioned why successive NDC governments did not undertake such a project despite petitions for them to do so.

He called on the former President to act and speak like someone who once held the highest office of the land and not let partisan politics blind him from the obvious.

“I couldn’t believe President Mahama will touch on the creation of new regions. If it was about creating pen and drawing new regions, why couldn’t he do it? His own people wrote to him, if it was about using pencil, why couldn’t he draw it for them?

“He run away from it. You need some courage and tact to do it because it’s a very delicate issue. We made reference to Oti Region. They went to Britain to ask for a new region even before independence. For him to say that as a former president is really disappointing. In his case, without being personal, he couldn’t even do it for Gonja land where he comes from because he lacked the courage to do it.

“You have to go through a whole process, so why would he describe it as drawing on a mere paper. There should be some sincerity and honesty in politics. He should accept that 'I couldn’t do it but they have done it.' During the referendum, he went to his place to vote, if it was mere drawing, would he do that?” he quizzed.

Dan Botwe noted that contrary to John Mahama claims of no development projects ongoing in the new regions, the government is undertaking various projects including the building of offices for regional coordinating councils, security installations, among others.

He revealed that nearly 100 projects are ongoing and that government is determined to bring development to the new regions.

John Mahama during an address of chiefs and people at Nalerigu last week bemoaned the lack of development at the place.

"You cannot just create regions in the name. The regions must be worthy of being called regions. And it is the infrastructure that makes a region a region."

"If you go to Tamale you will know that this is the Northern Region, if you go to Bolga you know that this is the Upper East Region. If you come to Nalerigu it is a shadow of a region," adding "we don't only need the regional boundaries to be re-drawn; we need regional infrastructure so that when you come you will say yes, this is the North East Region."

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