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Opinions of Sunday, 9 February 2020

Columnist: www.writersghana.com/

Avatim: A bucolic tourism and telecoms destination needs help

I went to Avatime Vane on a Pauline mission on 1 November 2019, responding to the cry “Come to Avatime and help us”.

Despite their poverty, my “Woezor” or welcome was so special that I have decided to research and uplift the town and link it to the fortunes of BlueCrest College, where I am schooling.

I had wanted to visit Avatime due to a story published on 4 July 2011 on ghanabusinessnews.com culled from GNA.

In the story, Evans Ostyina, Vice President of Avatime Gemi Otoga Eco-tourism Society, announced at a seminar that his hometown was “greatly endowed with beautiful landscapes, mountains, varied species of birds, …..trees,” but needed help “to make the place a destination for many tourists”.

Determined to place both BlueCrest College and Avatime on a bigger pedestal, like Saint Paul sent by no one, I chose to heed the call for help from Ms A, a Facebook acquaintance.

Ms A, who teaches at a basic school in Avatime has lived practically all her life in the village.

It is made up of six sister settlements, namely Amedzofe, Avatime Biakpa, Avatime Dzogbefeme, Avatime Gbadzeme, Avatime Fume, and Avatime Dzokpe.

Vane, where the ‘Osie’ or overlord of Avatime resides, is located on the main Ho-Fume road.

The people celebrate Amu or ‘rice festival’, typical of Ghanaian harvest festivals.

Little wonder the population of mostly farmers grow varieties of cassava, yams, beans, cocoyam, rice and plantains in typical mixed cropping style.

Those crops are suffused into large farms of coffee, cocoa, gardens of okra, tomatoes, avocados, bananas, papaya, palm nut and tea meant for more commercial purposes.

Avatime Vane has a cool microclimate, thanks to the Akwapim-Togo Ranges, an ancient volcanic rock formation, with an all year round sunshine.

Due to less crowded housing and a pristine natural semi-deciduous forest, I was able to stay here overnight without needing a fan or AC, unlike in Accra.

The school system here was established by German missionaries in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but this has not seen much progress.

Tourists normally use the mountains for hiking, but here again, Vane hardly featured in the Year of Return tourist frenzy.

Avatime’s contribution to world history is that the Germans settled here during World War ll, setting up their telephone signal poles, which aided their telephone communications.

But almost 75 years since the war ended, the telephone network here is rather poor making it a major push factor; I certainly cannot stay without an Internet connection.

Here, I believe BlueCrest College, being the best IT training institution in Ghana can strongly advocate for research into the German telephone technology and contribute important national solutions.

I hereby promise to get Avatime Senior High School a place in the BlueCrest National Competitive Exam so that Avatime citizens too can win the BlueCrest Presidential Scholarship Awards.

If I get an Avatime citizen to study IT at BlueCrest College, the town’s historical relevance in telecommunications engineering will be restored.

And by this story I am also sending out the battle cry, “Come to Avatime and help us”.