NPP questions Volta Region population figures
The opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) is questioning the credibility of the population figures of the Volta Region.
Speaking on the Point Blank segment on Eyewitness News, the Volta Regional Chairman of the NPP, Peter Amewu explained that the region as compared to other regions does not have any major economic activity to warrant the continuous increases in their population.
Peter Amewu made the comments while responding to claims by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) that the NPP singled out the Volta Region in its recent findings on Ghana’s voters register, saying it is an attack on the people there.
The 2012 population and housing census projects the population of Volta Region to be 2,118,252.
According to the NPP, information available to the party suggests that the population figures are suspicious.
The NPP had argued that the nation’s voters register is bloated with names of Togolese and Ivorians, and must be replaced with a new one.
They claim that over 76,286 names of Togolese are on Ghana’s register and that of Togo.
He observed that about 300,000 from the region were registered on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) prior to the 2012 election.
He argued that, “it is an exercise we started and we decided to start from constituencies bordering Togo and Ivory Coast. We have demonstrated, for instance, the registrations of the national health insurance for the pro-poor communities in Ghana which was 300,000 and the registration was done quite close to the 2012 election and this calls for questioning. We have done that across the whole country.”
“I am from Volta Region and I know the level of migration of people from the place to other parts of this country. There is no major economic activity in Volta Region. Areas like the Western Region that has a lot of oil which we expect migration activities to increase; the level of migration is far less compared to the increase in the voters register.”
Though Peter Amewu conceded that there may be Ghanaians leaving in Togo and are likely to return to register, Peter Amewu said “the point we are raising is that those Ghanaians could be the same appearing on Togo’s register. Assuming they are Ghanaians, these are names that are appearing in the register of the two countries.”
The NPP’s Volta chairman insisted that “it’s not an ordinary claim that we are making; it’s a genuine claim. The likelihood of these people not being Ghanaians is very high.”
“We did that for the NHIS in the Ashanti region and it was clear that the people who registered in the Ashanti region with such a higher population were far less than the people who registered in the Volta Region. What is the justification? About 300,000 people were registered onto the NHIS close to the 2012 election. The attention was for this people get the high living in Volta region precisely Hohoe. If you go to the Hohoe government hospital, the whole place is flooded with Togolese and that is the reason why the NHIS is not working, it has collapsed because the bulk of people that go to the hospitals in the Volta Region, the scheme cannot pay for them and that is the basic problem,” he added.