The crave for a new region for the northern part of the Volta region in Ghana is not only dear to the hearts of the chiefs and people there, but very legendary.
The demand started since the inception of Buem-Krachi district, also known as Oti, with persistent appeal to successive governments to create another administrative area out of the Volta region.
In 1970, the chiefs and people of the proposed Oti Region petitioned the Progress Party government, under Prime Minister Dr. K.A. Busia, in 1991, a delegation went to Chairman of the Provisional National Defence Council, Flight Lieutenant Jerry John Rawlings, and in 1995 during the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, a petition was again sent to President Rawlings.
In 2005, under the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, a petition was sent to President John Agyekum Kufuor; and in 2007 a delegation was invited to meet the Council of State over the matter.
Unsatisfied with responses to their demand, the people in 2016, again appealed to President John Dramani Mahama, under the NDC government, at several forums, and in 2017, a petition was sent to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
This is an indication that the two dominant political parties in the country, NDC and NPP, appreciate the concern of the chiefs and people of Oti area.
It is, therefore, not surprising that the NDC and NPP pledged in their manifestoes to create more regions in Northern, Volta, Western and Brong Ahafo Regions, if they win the 2016 polls.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, then flagbearer of the NPP, in particular, in 2016, was vociferous that if elected as President, he would explore the possibility of creating new regions out of some of the existing regions in Ghana, in order to bring governance and development closer to citizens.
True to his words, he has set in motion a plan, which is being rolled out by the newly created Ministry of Regional Re-organisation and Development, under the leadership of Dan Botwe, in collaboration with other government bodies, individuals and organizations, fufil his promise.
The Justice Brobbey Commission, was formed by President Akufo-Addo, under Constitutional Instrument (CI) 105, to among other things, inquire, into the need and substantial demand for the creation of regions, in Northern, Volta, Western and Brong Ahafo Regions.
It rounded up its public hearings with a last sitting in Accra, in April, 2018, and has submitted its report on the matter to government, after which a referendum would be held in the beneficiary regions.
Now, the people of Oti Region, the newly proposed region, to be created out of the Volta region, have breathed air of relief, and are supporting the government towards the realisation of their dreams.
To facilitate the process, the chiefs and people of eight districts and areas of the proposed new region, have formed a Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) of Oti Movement, in April, last year
The districts are Jasikan, Kadjebi, Biakoye, Krachi East, Krachi West, Krachi Nchumuru, Nkwanta North and Nkwanta South, and the traditional areas, include include Lolobi, Akpafu, Santrokofi, Likpe.
Currently the JCC is sensitising the people of these districts and traditional areas on the need to embrace the creation of the Oti Region.
The message of proponents of the Oti Region is simple. It is the surest means of opening up the area for investments opportunities, provision of more infrastructure and social amenities, to accelerate socio-economic development.
It would also enable the people of Oti enclave select a new capital that would be geographically and centrally located on an active and accessible route.
The journey to create Oti region has reached an advanced stage, and it behoves all citizens of the area, both home and abroad, to contribute and support the JCC, which has become the mouth-piece of the proponents, towards the realization of the agenda.
The writer: Oheneba Eric Agyei Agyapong is a citizen of Okadjakrom, Jasikan District of the Volta Region. Email: [email protected]