General News of Wednesday, 9 August 2017
The chiefs and people of Denkyira-Obuasi in the Central Region – the town where Major Maxwell Mahama was gruesomely killed barely four months ago – heaved a sigh of relief on Monday when President Akufo-Addo visited the community.
He assured them that in spite of whatever had gone on and the stigma the town had suffered, he and his government would not abandon them.
He gave the assurance when he and his entourage visited Denkyira-Obuasi as part of his six-day working tour of the Western and the Central Regions.
“I was saddened by the incident. It hurt me that such an act should occur under my presidency. I have come to appeal to you that such a thing should never occur in Denkyira-Obuasi, let alone in any part of our country. Let it be the last time that we see such an event in our country,” he charged.
Many were those who thought the government, and for that matter President Akufo-Addo, would impose some sanctions on the people of the place.
Unfortunate as the events that led to the gruesome murder of the young military officer were, he underscored, “The pain I brought from Accra has been lifted because of what the Omanhene has said today.”
This was after the Krontihene of the area, Odiamono Twum Barimah II, had appealed for forgiveness on behalf of his people.
He was first to admit that what happened was not right and should never have happened, saying, “I will plead with all Ghanaians to learn a lesson from this sad incident. The police, judiciary and lawyers are the ones charged with the prosecution of crime. We should therefore not take the law into our own hands.”
President Akufo-Addo pointed out that “you are a part of Ghana. I have come to assure you that despite what has happened, my government will not abandon you. Whatever policies we have put in place to improve the living conditions of Ghanaians, such as the Free SHS policy, the programme for ‘Planting for Food and Jobs,’ ‘One District, One Factory,’ Denkyira-Obuasi, now New Obuasi, according to the Omanhene, will be a part of them.”
On the requests made by the chief of Denkyira-Obuasi, President Akufo-Addo gave the assurance that the poor roads in the town would be rehabilitated.
Touching on the appeal by the people for the restoration of their District Chief Executive, President Akufo-Addo assured the gathering that a decision on the status of Mr. Appianin would be made public in the coming days.
Cocoa Spraying Programme
Prior to his arrival in the town, President Akufo-Addo was at Dansokrom, in Sefwi Wiawso, for the re-launch of the Cocoa Diseases and Pest Control Programme (CODAPEC).
The programme, otherwise known as “Cocoa Mass Spraying Programme,” was established under the Kufuor government to assist all cocoa farmers in the country to combat capsid and the black pod diseases.
The programme was also to train farmers and technical personnel on the methods of pest and disease control.
Indeed, the attainment of more than one million tonnes of cocoa beans in the 2010/2011 crop season was a direct result of the Cocoa Mass Spraying exercise. But it was not sustained after the exit of the previous Kufuor administration.
It is for this reason that the Akufo-Addo government has resolved to make it functional again and to help improve the yield per hectare for all farmers across the country.
Government has also decided to assist farmers to spray their farms twice a year, with help from the private sector.
President Akufo-Addo ended the first day of his tour of the Western Region with a visit to Wassa Akropong, where he interacted with the chiefs and people, and reiterated his commitment towards the creation of the Western-North Region.