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My ministry does not determine administrative structures - Dan Botwe

BY: Musah Yahaya Jafaru
Dan Botwe —  Minister of Regional Reorganisation and Development
Dan Botwe — Minister of Regional Reorganisation and Development

The Minister of Regional Reorganisation and Development, Mr Dan Botwe,  has said his ministry does not determine the administrative structures of the various districts in the newly created regions in the country.

He said his ministry's mandate was to facilitate the creation of the new regions and their development, and that "Issues relating to administrative sub-divisions are not part of the mandate of the Ministry."
Mr Botwe was answering an urgent question in Parliament posed by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Member of Parliament (MP) for Hohoe, Dr Mrs Bernice Adiku Heloo, on the status of the Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe traditional areas.
She said the people of the four traditional areas who were originally part of the Hohoe Municipality and Hohoe Constituency did not know the particular district or constituency they belonged to now.
Dr Mrs Heloo said the people in the four traditional areas would be denied the needed support for infrastructure development and other social support since they were not sure of the district or constituency they fell under now.
President Akufo-Addo appointed the Justice Brobbey Commission of Enquiry under Article 5 of the 1992 Constitution to enquire into the demand for the creation of new regions and to make recommendations on all the factors involved in the creation or alteration of a region or the merger of regions.
Article 5(4) of the Constitution provides that where the Commission of Enquiry finds that there is a need and a substantial demand for the creation, alteration or merger, it shall recommend to the President that a referendum be held, specifying the issues to be determined by the referendum and the places where the referendum shall be held.
The new regions created after the conduct of a referendum by the Electoral Commission (EC) are the Western North, Bono East, Ahafo, Savannah, North East and Oti.
Commissions
Mr Botwe said the process for the creation of  a new area was governed by law, and indicated that the commission recommended the places where they should do the referendum for the creation of new regions.
He referred to Article 5(5) of the Constitution which states that "The President shall refer the recommendations to the Electoral Commission (EC) and the referendum shall be held in a manner described by the Electoral Commission."
He said pursuant to Constitutional Instrument (CI)109, the EC conducted referendum on December 27, 2018 in the places or areas listed, and these included Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe traditional areas.
"The people of Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe traditional areas and the eight districts participated in the referendum and recorded 88.3 per cent voter turn out and 98.6 per cent 'yes' vote as gazetted by the EC", he said.
Mr Botwe explained that Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe traditional areas were now part of the Oti Region.
"With the creation of the Oti Region and the presentation of the CI 112 to the chiefs of the two regions on February 15, 2019 by the President, Santrokofi, Akpafu, Lolobi and Likpe traditional areas currently fall under the Oti Region", he said.