General News of Wednesday, 1 February 2017
An Islamic Scholar with the Office of the National Chief Imam has alluded that the Savanna Accelerated Development Fund (SADA) initiated by former President John Mahama failed because of nepotism.
Sheikh Aremeyaw Shaibu said “President Mahama gave SADA to a northerner thinking the programme is for northerners and as such a northerner will manage it better but they disappointed him”.
Sheikh Aremeyaw, who is also the Public Relations Officer for the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Dr. Osmanu Nuhu Sharubutu was commenting on the creation of the Ministry of Inner Cities and Zongo Development by President Nana Akufo-Addo on Onua FM’s Yen Sempa hosted by Bright Asempa on Tuesday.
Sheikh Aremeyaw described treatment by politicians to the zongos as “departure for traditions, tokenism of politics”.
He explained that “zongos have high expectation from the minister designate, Alhaji Boniface Abubarkar Sadique not because he is from zongo, we know he is someone who can do it. I have the hope that he will do exactly what is expected of them to develop the zongos. We don’t want the minister to be from zongo because the fund is for zongos but someone who can do the job because President Mahama gave SADA to a northerner thinking the programme is for northerners and as such a northerner managing it is better, but they disappointed him”.
The PRO said “the moment the name is mentioned, it pictures in your mind how the places are and as such we need to have someone who will work to alleviate this image from the minds of the people and not necessary a zongo person”.
Plights of Zongos He said in the minds of Ghanaians, “zongos are crowded places with high poverty rate. In our minds, zongos are not a good place to live so we want someone who will bring good life to these people”. “We have no good schools, no good roads, but you live all these and give us rice during Ramadan”, he noted. He noted that “scholarships are not given to the Muslims. The ones that are going to US, UK are hidden from us but they give us the ones going to Egypt, Libya and other Arab countries”.
The Chief Imam’s PRO said “there is not SHS in any zongo in the country. No motivations for teachers but the improvement must start from the schools”.
Sheikh Shaibu said “we need economic empowerment in zongos. Zongo women know how to cook best for the public. Hajia wakye is a household name in every community and these are the things that will bring change to improve quality of life of the people of zongo”.