The Minister's New Year Message
Fellow Upper Westerners, my brothers and sisters, as we prepare to begin the New Year let us give thanks to Almighty Allah for guiding us through the year 2018.
The year 2018 was a bit challenging one for the Region. During the year, the Regional Security Council had to set up three different and separate committees to look into some disturbances in the Region. In all these disturbances, however, the Police and sister security services were up to the task in maintaining law and order. Their early interventions helped restore calm, prevent injuries and saved many lives and property. While I commend the security services for the good work, I also want to encourage them to promote and foster a more cordial relationship amongst themselves. It does not matter which of the services you belong, you are all serving the same state but in different ways in protecting its citizenry.
Let me also state that, the timely interventions of the security agencies in the disturbances were because of the timely intelligence gathered and information provided by peace loving citizens amongst us.
I salute such people for their vigilance and patriotism and as well entreat all of us in the region to be more security conscious. Whenever you suspect anything-unusual going on in your community, please do not hesitate to report to the police or opinion leaders to take it up for investigation.
My brothers and sister, I want to assure you that the Regional Security Council and Municipal/District Security Councils in the region will be more proactive in 2019. We will do our best to challenge the police to up their game to guarantee the security of the Region so that our people can go about their normal business and social activities peacefully.
I entreat all particularly the youth not to always take the law into their own hands. Please, follow due process to addressing whatever grievances you have, going forward. Due process may be slow but that is the best way to resolving matters without putting the lives of the innocent and vulnerable at risk.
Fellow Upper Westerners, the Region also witnessed so much good during the year. We saw many young people and graduates from the Region engaged by government under the Nation Builders Corps and into other departments and agencies. Many of our people also took advantage of the Planting for Food and Jobs Programme to venture into farming. With the good rains recorded in the year, I am optimistic there was bumper harvest in the region. We only need to take decent measures to minimize post-harvest losses. In 2019, government will again be rolling out yet another initiative, “Rearing for Food and Jobs” and I encourage you all particularly government workers to take advantage of the program to supplement our monthly earnings.
During the year, we also had the second batch of the Free Senior High School Students enrolled into various Senior High schools across the region. The double track policy was introduced to deal with the challenges of overcrowding due to increase enrollments in our Senior High Schools. I commend all Headmasters/Headmistresses and their staff for ensuring a smooth take off of the policy in the region. I also thank parents and guardians for their role in the smooth implementation of the policy.
The year 2019 looks more promising for the people of Ghana and the Upper West Region in particular. Government has given indications that the good macroeconomic policies implemented in the first two years are yielding positive dividends and have created a more business-friendly economy. These gains will soon translate into prosperity and create wealth for all of us.
As we enter the year 2019, I want to reiterate that it is not for nothing that we were placed as Waalas, Sissalas, Dagaabas, Chakali, Brifos, etc. in the same region to leave together. Please note that under the laws of Ghana we are all the same citizens and no tribe is superior to the other. The same way none is inferior to the other. We have a common purpose and destiny to work hand in hand to uplift the Region and improve the livelihood of our people.
Let us forge ahead together as one people into the New Year and work together to develop our Region for the benefit of ourselves, our children and the future generation.
On this note, let me state that some of our compatriots who were with us and helping to achieve the goals of the region are no more. I want to take this opportunity to pray that Allah grants them his abundant mercy and let them have eternal rest. We appreciate their contributions to the region’s development agenda.
I thank you all for the attention and I wish you all a prosperous New Year, 2019.
Thank you all and may God bless the Upper West Region and Our Homeland Ghana.