Gov't ups allowances: Paramount chiefs get GHC1,000 each, queenmothers 800

File photo[/caption] Government has increased the GHC500 sitting allowance for each member of the various Houses of Chiefs to GHC1,000, Minister for Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Kofi Dzamesi, announced Thursday. The GHC350 allowance for queenmothers has been pegged at GHC800. A total of GHC50,000 has also been allocated by the government for the rehabilitation of the offices of the various regional houses of chiefs. Mr Dzamesi announced these at a workshop for paramount chiefs and queenmothers across the country to engage them on the objective of government’s plan of creating four additional regions. The workshop was held at the Western Regional House of Chiefs with support from the Konrad-Adenauer –Stiftung, and was to orient the chiefs and queenmothers on efforts put in place so far by government towards the creation of the new regions. It was on the theme “Traditional authority and regional reorganization.” The need to increase the allowance, according to Mr Dzamesi, was because the amount was inadequate. The chiefs had earlier advocated an increment in the allowances. “The first thing has to do with the allowances our paramount chiefs and queenmothers take. We feel that it is inadequate. So I am here to announce to you that the 500-cedi allowance that is being taken by the chiefs, this year we will increase it to 1,000 [cedis] “And then for the queenmothers, from 350 [cedis] to 800 [cedis]. In addition to that, all the various allowances that you take, that is your sitting allowances, will also be increase enormously,” Mr Dzamesi announced. Meanwhile, the government created a new ministry to spearhead the creation of additional regions to allow for a more efficient governance system. It is expected that the ‘Western-North’ region to be carved out of the Western Region will have the Sefwi, Juaboso, Bodi, Bia and Bibiani areas as the borders of the new region. Mr Djamesi said the creation of additional regions would impact on the development of the country, which will require the input of the chiefs. He commended the traditional authorities in the country for their enormous contribution towards peace and stability but urged them to also help resolve the various chieftaincy disputes in doted around in parts of the country. President of the Western Regional House of Chiefs and paramount chief of Sefwi Ahwiaso Traditional Area, Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II, called on the chiefs to collaborate with government in facilitating the creation of the new region. He urged them to support the fight against galamsey which has destroyed the country’s environment.

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Western Regional minister, Dr. Kwaku Afriyie, highlighted on a number of issues in the region including road rehabilitation, chieftaincy disputes, illegal mining activities as the challenges. He said Ghana’s development revolves around the development of the Western Region and pledged to champion that. Minister for Regional Reorganization, Dan Kwaku Botwe, stated the creation of the new regions is paramount towards accelerated development, adding the two main political parties in parliament have all come to a consensus in ensuring its facilitation. He explained to the chiefs that a commission will be set up to solicit for views from the people, including traditional authorities to facilitate the process. Recommendations will then be given to the president who in turn will forward them to the Electoral Commission, he added. By William Benjamin Peters |Connect FM|3news.com|]]>