C/Regional Minister-designate offers plan to boost local economy
Central Regional Minister-designate E.K.T. Addo pledged to improve economic conditions in his region by clearing its territorial waters, which coast-dwelling fishermen rely on for their livelihoods, of illegal fishing vessels from China and Korea.
Appearing before Parliament’s Appointments Committee, he explained that some of the poachers’ practices, such as scraping the seabed for fish and other organisms, is disrupting the ecosystem and depleting the area of fish, putting further financial strains on already struggling communities.
He reported that navy vessels purchased under the Mills’ administration have already made progress in pushing out illegal fishing operations and will continue to do so.
He also plans to boost the region’s economy by pairing unskilled workers with master carpenters and construction craftsmen in areas currently experiencing an estate development boom. He explained that the hands-on experience these workers would gain by building the homes, which are rapidly popping up in parts of the Central Region close to Accra, would endow them with the skills to become experts in their own rites.
In areas around Ekumfi, where soil conditions are less than ideal for growing foodstuffs, he pledged to support the establishment of acacia plantations for charcoal production. Half an acre of these manmade forests yields between Ghc600 and Ghc1000 worth of charcoal each year, he reported.
Regarding the stadium to be built in Cape Coast, he reported that upon inspecting the site, Chinese engineers recommended an expansion of the area where the stadium will be built. The project will move ahead, he said, once additional land has been secured and its owners compensated.