Nana Osompa Nyamekye II — Chief of Otapirow
Nana Osompa Nyamekye II — Chief of Otapirow

Integrate Otapirow into Gomoa Central District — Nana Nyamekye II

The recent district-level elections held on December 19, 2023, was boycotted by the chiefs and people of Gomoa Otapirow in the Agona West Municipality in the Central Region.

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The decision by members of the community to abstain from the elections was to press home their demand for the area to be integrated into the Gomoa Central District instead of the current Agona West Municipality.

The long-standing request to the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD) has not received the needed attention from successive governments compelling the people to boycott the recent elections.

Outcome of elections

The community with two polling stations is part of the Nkubem/Botwe Estate/Otapirow electoral area in the Agona West Municipality.

With a total voter population in the two polling stations totalling more than 800, only 10 voted in  the ADA ‘B’ polling station with no resident voting at the polling station A due to the boycott by the residents in the community.

The resolve by the people not to participate in the elections was to send a strong signal to authorities to heed to their age-old call for the area to be made part of the Gomoa Central District with its capital as Gomoa Afransi instead of the Agona West Municipality whose capital is Agona Swedru.

Information gathered by the Daily Graphic indicated that the town whose indigenes trace their route from Gomoa used to be part of the then Gomoa District but due to its proximity to Agona West, it was politically made part of the Agona West Municipality in 1978 during the regime of General Ignatius Kutu Acheampong.

Interestingly, its educational issues and chieftaincy matters, which fall under the Gomoa Akyempim Traditional Council, are all within the current Gomoa Central District.

Letter

A letter addressed to the MLGDRD said recent developments within the town reinforced the need for a request for the area to be placed within the Gomoa Central District.

It stated that the call was premised on the fact that the indigenes and most of the inhabitants were traditionally traced to the Gomoa heritage, saying “consequently, the town takes its chieftaincy headship and paramountcy from the Gomoa Akyempim Traditional Council”.

Moreover, the letter said the basic school in the town is under the supervision of the education directorate in the Gomoa Central District instead of the Agona West Municipality and added that hitherto, issues of education, chieftaincy and local governance concerning the town used to be part of the Gomoa Central District until the area was politically made part of the Agona West Municipality.

“Therefore, we call for the rezoning of Otapirow to be made part of Gomoa Central to give the area a uniform headship in areas of education, chieftaincy and local governance for effective administration” it stated. 

Finality

Throwing more light on their decision in a recent interview, the Chief of Otapirow, Nana Osompa Nyamekye II, reiterated the fact that the decision by the people to boycott the elections was to demand finality to current issue.

He said “the situation where we vote in Agona West while the basic school and chieftaincy is under Gomoa Central is negatively affecting the progress of the area”, and added that “for instance, any request for educational projects from Agona West Municipality, we are reminded that our educational issues fall under Gomoa Central”.

He further stated that when such requests were directed to the management of the Gomoa Central District, “our request is turned down with the reason that residents in the community did not vote in the district”.

“As a people, we have realised that it is essential for this pending issue to be addressed as quickly as possible to propel the progress of the community,” he said, noting that “it is important for all issues concerning the community to be uniform and be placed under the Gomoa Central District”.

Nana Nyamekye II, who is also the Nsafowahen of Gomoa Akyempim Traditional Area, added that administratively it was not right for the area to be tossed between the two districts and added that as a result the community had not benefitted from any meaningful projects from the two districts.

On challenges, he lamented about the poor state of the main road to the town.

Some of the residents, in an interview, expressed worry about the development and entreated the appropriate authorities not to pay lip service to their demand but rather act upon it towards the transformation of the community.

For his part, the Assembly member elect for the area, Kweku J.E. Adam, agreed with the concerns of the people but urged them to continue to adopt dialogue with key actors towards addressing the issue.

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That notwithstanding, he promised to continue to lobby for the execution of projects towards the forward march of the town until a decision was arrived at.

Writer’s email: [email protected].

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