Politics of Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Source: GNA

President opens Policy Fair in Western Region

President John Evans Atta Mills on Wednesday said the Western Region has great potentials that needed to be explored for the benefit of the citizenry and the country as a whole.

“We have no doubt in our minds at all that the Western Region is one of the most resourced regions in Ghana in terms of natural and human resources. This can be viewed from the contributions in the mineral sector, cocoa, timber, oil and gas.”

President Atta Mills said this when he opened the four-day Western Regional Policy Fair at the Essipon Sports Stadium in Sekondi.

He said the regions' contribution to the development of the country therefore could not be underestimated, adding that, the policy fair should be an avenue to help open the doors to other hidden potentials in the region.

President Atta Mills noted that the policy fair concept was in line with government’s mission to bring governance to the doorstep of the people, particularly those at the grassroots level.

The Policy Fair is a model created by government to highlight the policies and programmes of the various Ministries, Departments and Agencies as well as the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies for the better understanding and appreciation of all Ghanaians.

The President said the fair equally provides an avenue for effective networking, collaboration and partnership between the public and the private sector to effectively harness the economic potentials of the region.

“I will therefore entreat operators in the private sector to take advantage of the opportunities that the policy fair offers to maximize the business and investment opportunities, so as to create the desired employment avenues for the youths in the region in particular and the country as a whole.

He said since the assumption of office by his government, it had adopted several measures to ensure that Ghanaians were adequately informed about opportunities that have been created and the means for them to take advantage of these great opportunities as a tool for improving upon their living standards.

Mr. Paul Evans Aidoo, the Western Regional Minister said the Region had enjoyed some relative peace and tranquility and called on the citizenry to cherish the peaceful atmosphere as well as protecting it.

He said the Fair was in conformity with government commitment at ensuring that the grassroots’ benefited from government policies, programmes and activities adding that, “This is in line with the President’s intention of running an open, transparent, participatory and accountable governance system.

Mr. Aidoo said illegal mining, forest degradation and other illegal activities by some individuals were affecting the well-being of the people and their development.

He however lauded the contribution of traditional authorities in the Region for promoting peace among themselves and their subjects, adding that without them, the relative peace that the region enjoys would have been an illusion.

The Regional Minister said the region, since the oil find, had received lots of people and was bracing itself to use all the state resources available to ensure peace and stability.

Mr. George Dadzie, A Member of the Council of State urged Ghanaians to criticize constructively and contribute positively towards the drafting of formidable policies that would make the nation great and strong.

He said government was committed to attracting increased local value added investments in the oil and gas sector and therefore called for capacity building at all levels in the technical, vocational and tertiary institutions.

The Council of State member called for strengthening of objectives and targets among related organizations for effective coordination throughout the policy delivery chain.**