The deplorable state of the roads and the lack of piped water in many communities in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba constituency in the Northern Region is retarding development of the area, according to the Member of Parliament (MP).
The Sawla-Tuna-Kalba constituency is one of the deprived districts in the country and is characterised by poor roads, lack of potable water and a high level of unemployment.
It is really a picture of neglect. In fact, it is neglect of the highest order where subsistence farming is the mainstay of the local economy.
Hon. Andrews Dari Chiwitey , National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Sawla-Tuna Kalba constituency, is so incensed over the situation and for the plight of the people as roads and water played major factor in determining the wellbeing of the constituency.
He told The Republic in an exclusive interview last weekend, the absence of potable drinking water and the deplorable roads is affecting the lives of the people and free movement of vehicles and residents in general.
The road that serves as the major road linking the three important towns making up the district is very bad and construction work on the road has stalled since January, this year.
The road, which is about 32 km, according to Hon. Chiwitey, was awarded for contract under the previous NDC government, but the contractor has left site and effort to reach him proved futile.
He is unaware what might have caused the contractor to abandon the road having started work progressively soon after the sod was cut sometime in 2016, before the general elections.
The contractor, the MP said, has built some culverts and done major works on the roads, but has since left site, stating, “as I am speaking to you, the contractor is not on site, since January, work has stalled and I did all what I could to reach the contractor, but I couldn’t get him. The roads are in a very poor condition and we need the contractor back on site because that stretch of road is very important to us.”
Hon. Chiwitey further told the paper that, even though other developmental projects, including education and health facilities, are so important, the deplorable state of the roads has impacted negatively on all aspect of others, especially businesses.
On the issue of drinkable water, the MP said the government has initiated some boreholes project where about 32 boreholes have been drilled, but work has also got stalled due to lack of funds.
The contractor on the boreholes has promised to return to site to fix some of them, while effort is being made to complete the entire project.
Nonetheless, the MP said the unavailability of water is affecting the lives of residents, as they rely heavily on untreated water from the Black Volta River over the years.
He added that the Black Volta River water, which the people have relied on for years, has also now been polluted by the activities of illegal mining, popularly known as “galamsey.”
Mr. Chiwitey expressed worry about the situation and called on government to expedite action for the people of Sawla-Tuna-Kalba and its adjoining communities to enjoy potable drinking water.
The district, he said, has benefited from a number of education and health projects under the previous government, noting, that a district hospital project is still ongoing to improve the health needs of the people when completed.
He also cited the high cost of fertiliser and unavailability of farming tractors, among others, as some of the impediments to youth having interest in farming, thereby making farming very expensive and unattractive in the communities.
In his view, water and roads are very key developmental needs and he would focus on that so to relieve the people, stating he would lobby intensively to the government, as well as use his MPs common fund to bring development closer to the people.
A trained Human Resource Manager, Mr, Chiwitey expressed confidence that he will deliver the needs of the people as their representation in parliament.
He also promised to tackle the high level of unemployment, poor roads and the lack of piped water in the constituency.
He listed a slew of issues in the constituency that, he said, will have to be addressed under his watch, adding that apart from infrastructural development, the youth will have to be engaged in an effort to put the constituency on a path of growth and development.
The Sawla-Tuna-Kalba MP noted that, a number of young persons are unemployed and that as he travels across the constituency that is one of the things that face him, stating, “My way of leading is to engage them in a series of discussions to see how to get them involved. My way of dealing with it is to look at something that is sustainable for these young people.”
He charged the constituents to remain law abiding citizens, refraining from any incidents of violence, while he pushes for development to be brought to their door steps.
The MP noted that education is a bedrock of societal development and would forever remain his topmost agenda and he would do everything humanly possible to implement measures to improve the quality of basic education in the constituency.
He however called on parents and guardians to take their wards’ education needs seriously as it remained the only way they could eliminate poverty in their communities, saying, ” I know times are hard, farming which is our main source of economy is not yielding, but if we commit the few resources at our disposal for the children’s education it will in the end reduce the level of poverty in our communities.”
He reiterated his commitment to lobby to government and also seek investors to improve basic necessities, including water, health and education.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/ Felix Engsalige Nyaaba