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Opinions of Thursday, 4 July 2013

Columnist: Abdulai, Alhasan

Upheavals in districts and municipal assemblies

- our suggestions

For some time now, most government appointees such as District and Municipal Chief Executives are sitting on ‘tenterhooks’ as they are going through real traumatic tests after their approval by assembly members.

The people are getting wide awake and are poised to take their destiny in their own hands by choosing the path of picketing and demonstrations which they believe are the ‘languages’ understood by the authorities.

RADICAL AGITATIONS

They are relying on the radical motto that says; ‘we no go sit down make them cheat we every day, daabida’. They hold placards, burn tires, as they agitate for their rights

The serious actions by a group of drivers in Ashaiman in the Greater Accra Region over a bad road network in the Town are a good example of the show of the people’s power.

Again a strike action by drivers of Asamankese as reported by the media in the Eastern Region on July 1, over bad roads, and some more agitations around the country, are but a few of the actions people in towns and villages have taking to seek redress at the district levels.

One such happening is the sticky process of re-appointing Dr Oko Vanderpuye to continue as AMA Chief Executive which was opposed by some members of the assembly and some individuals for alleged poor performance over the past four years. However his appointment has been approved by the AMA.

The agitations and other similar actions though unorthodox seem to be working for the agitators. They are getting their grievances sorted out.

They have one common set of reasons for the actions they take; According to the agitators almost all DCES and MCES are quite aware about the problems facing the people before assuming office.

The DCEs might have made promises to provide or renovate for the people some important amenities such as schools, roads and provide potable water. On getting to the office some of them are found wanting

The questions the DCEs must ponder over are;

• Why is it that with all their efforts the people still embark on upheavals in towns and villages to prompt actions to be taken by the central government to provide amenities to them?

• Does it mean that upheavals occur because some of the DCEs engage in ‘divide and rule’ tactics working in close collaboration with only those close to their political believes?

• Does it mean that the assemblies do not receive funding on time from the governmental agencies concerned towards projects in the areas concerned? As we await answers to the above questions, we advise that the DCEs and MCEs who are representatives of the president and central government must be forth coming with information to the assemblies. That would not only lesson the anxiety of the people, it would also make them hopeful.

They must institute an early warning mechanism used by governments at all levels to detect grievances of workers before they take action.

Any attempt by DCEs/MCEs to keep their distance from the people ignoring the danger signs and only issue instruction to his underlings would create problems to them.

Since they are the administrative heads of the district who have pledged to serve the people, they must be in constant touch with them through community representatives in the assembly, opinion leaders, traditional rulers and religious leaders

Apart from opening his doors to the people (which I know some of them are doing), they should plan regular visitations to departments and schools under them to get to know what goes on in towns regarding projects and programs. His or her good attitude towards friends’, colleagues and the townsfolk would lead to improved relationship with the people who would understand and sympathize with them as they work to better their lot.

Alhaji Alhasan Abdulai

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

eanfoworld@yahoo.com/abdulai.alhasan@gmail.com

233 24370345/233 264370345/ 233 208844791