The Upper Manya Krobo District Assembly has failed to elect a new presiding member at the first ordinary meeting of the second session of the ninth assembly meeting held at Asesewa last Friday. After the first round of voting, the incumbent, Mr Evans Korli, polled five votes. Per the standing orders of the assembly, he has to step down. The other two contestants: Messrs Eric Tettey and Lawer Kwesi got to the second round but none of them were also able to make the required number of votes to secure the position.
The assembly, therefore, adjourned the meeting till another time as the standing orders state. The house, however, allowed Mr Korli to continue to act as presiding member until a substantive one was elected.
The District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Felix Nartey Odjao, was, however, not happy about the inability of the assembly to elect a presiding member, as it would be dragging the assembly’s development agenda back, adding that “any assembly without a presiding member is like a school without a head teacher’’.
Mr Odjao said out of 39 development projects ongoing in the district, 11 had been fully completed while the rest were ongoing and were also at various levels of completion. On the road sector, he said, out of 73.9 kilometres of roads that needed reshaping, 39.1 kilometres had been completed.
The DCE said there was an ongoing Hunger Project at Konkoney and Osonson which was meant to reduce maternal and child mortality in the project catchment areas.
He said the organisation sponsored four community health nurses who were trained as midwifery assistants to conduct simple emergency deliveries in their epicentres.
He also mentioned that Good Neighbours, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) working in the Upper Manya Krobo District, was collaborating with the district health service to reduce maternal and child mortality, targeting 30 communities through the implementation of child health and malaria interventions by supporting and identifying training gaps among health staff and build their capacity to provide quality health care to the communities. The NGO is also to train community- based volunteers in health delivery and build their capacities to meet the local health needs of the people.
He said the district health directorate distributed 51,065 long-lasting insecticide mosquito nets to people in the district out of 22,229 households registered. The DCE said most of the communities in the district suffered from mosquito bites and urged the assembly members to continue with the public education on the usage of the treated nets so as to avoid malaria in the district.
Finance of the assembly
On finances, Mr Odjao said the assembly’s performance in respect of Internally Generated Fund (IGF) had not been the best and could have been worse if the assembly had not put pragmatic measures in place to arrest the situation.
He, however, attested to the fact that there had been improvement judging from the revenue performance of the last quarter of 2017.
He said out of a target of GH¢476,660 for the year, an amount of GH¢150,657.50, representing 31.61 per cent was collected as of the end of April, 2018, and assured that further measures were being taken to reduce revenue leakages in the IGF.
The DCE said there was pressure on the assembly to reshape roads, construct schools and offer other needed social services to the various communities, yet many of the citizenry did not see the need to honour their tax obligations which were needed to provide the social amenities.
He said management took some initiatives such as the formation of a revenue taskforce and the outsourcing of some revenue items to tried and tested revenue collection institutions, so as to meet the target set for the year and meet the needs of the communities as well.
Mr Odjao said the development of the Upper Manya Krobo District was paramount, and should be devoid of factionalism, selfishness, and hard feelings so as to forge ahead, and therefore appealed to the assembly members to elect the presiding member when the assembly reconvened.