Wassa Amenfi West and Central fall victim to the resource curse; face both leadership failure and government abandonment

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In the video below, a journalist questions the government about poor roads in Amenfi West and Central.

The districts of Wassa Amenfi West and Central have unfortunately fallen victim to the resource curse, experiencing both leadership failure and government abandonment.

Amenfi West and Central lack access to better social amenities such as healthcare, education, potable water, good roads and recreational facilities. There is also the issue of youth unemployment and poor roads in the area. Youth unemployment has resulted in increased crime rates as some individuals have turned to illegal activities to survive.

Whilst the young people are facing unemployment challenges leading to feelings of hopelessness and despair, poor roads which have become the major topic of discussion in Amenfi West and Central are causing frustration, economic instability, and a decrease in overall quality of life.

It’s unfortunate to hear that just about 150 kilometres of road in the Amenfi West and Amenfi Central are asphalted and in good condition, while the rest are in poor condition. The only good road in Amenfi West is from Gyarman to Wassa Dunkwa which is part of the main road linking Enchi. Amenfi Central cannot boast of a single asphalted road.

Poor road infrastructure can have various negative impacts on communities, such as limited access to services, increased transportation costs, and difficulties in emergency response. There have been a lot of rants from concerned citizens and journalistic voices on Ahobraseye FM, Royal FM, Green Gold FM and Velvet Beam about poor road networks in the area but to no avail in recent years. Currently, a team called Wassa Amenfi Development Advocacy Team (WADAT) is planning to embark on a massive “No Tarred Road No Election” campaign on 25th August 2023″.

Despite the presence of valuable resources such as cocoa and a prominent timber and Plywood company- Samartex, the area continues to lack development.

One would have thought that the presence of valuable resources like gold, timber, cocoa, and food crops, would ideally contribute to the growth and prosperity of the community. But Amenfi West and Amenfi Central have become victims of the resource curse-a phenomenon postulated by renowned economists where countries or regions that are rich in natural resources, such as oil, gas, minerals, or timber, experience economic and social challenges instead of benefiting from their resource wealth. It is also known as the “paradox of plenty” or “Dutch disease.”

WHO IS BLAMABLE- LEADERS, THE GOVERNMENT OR THE CITIZENS IN THE AREA?

Determining who is to blame for the underdevelopment in Amenfi West and Amenfi Central is a complex matter that may involve multiple factors and perspectives, especially where the people in the area are too politically inclined.

Leaders, whether at the local, regional level or national level play a crucial role in driving development initiatives, creating policies, and implementing strategies that promote growth. Leaders in Amenfi West (traditional rulers, MCEs, MPs and Regional Minister) have not prioritized or effectively managed the resources in the area. This insensitive behaviour of leaders in the area has immensely contributed to the underdevelopment, with poor roads as the major cause of alarm.

Also, the government, at different levels, has a significant responsibility to create an enabling environment for development. This includes formulating and implementing policies, providing infrastructure, allocating resources, and ensuring equitable distribution of resources. In Amenfi West and Central, successive government has neglected their responsibilities or failed to address the development needs of the area.

Finally, the citizens may not have direct control over policy-making or resource management, but their active participation, engagement, and advocacy are essential for promoting development. Residents in Amenfi West and Amenfi Central have not actively engaged in community initiatives and held leaders accountable, or utilized available resources effectively as they always align themselves to their political parties. Leaders in the area and government always capitalize on the citizen’s political inclinations to hoodwink them.

WAY FORWARD

To address this issue, the communities need to come together and advocate for improved road infrastructure and other developmental needs. Here are a few steps that can be taken:

1. Awareness should be created in all Wassa Amenfi communities: community meetings or campaigns should be organised by concerned citizens to raise awareness about the poor road conditions and the impact it has on the community. This can help garner support and mobilize efforts for change. With a concerted effort, citizens can create various platforms such as community meetings, social media, and local newspapers to highlight the situation and bring attention to leadership failure or government abandonment.

2. Citizens must engage with local authorities: They should reach out to local government officials, such as district representatives or councillors, to express concerns about the poor road conditions. Request meetings with them to discuss possible solutions and seek their support.

3. Neighbouring communities must collaborate: Since Amenfi Central and Amenfi West are all facing similar road infrastructure challenges, they should consider forming alliances or coalitions to amplify their voices and advocate for improvements together.

4. Petition for funding: The two neighbouring communities -Amenfi West and Central should research and identify potential funding sources for road infrastructure projects, such as government grants or international aid programs. They should prepare a petition or proposal outlining the need for improved roads and submit it to relevant authorities.

5. Citizens should monitor progress in their area: They should Keep track of any actions taken by the authorities or other stakeholders to address the road infrastructure issue. If progress is slow or inadequate, they should continue to raise awareness and advocate for change.

6. It’s time for Amenfi Central and Amenfi West to seek legal recourse if necessary: Since the leadership failure or government abandonment is particularly severe or involves a violation of laws and regulations, it may be necessary to seek legal recourse. People in the area should consult legal experts or organizations specializing in governance issues to explore the available options.

7. Prioritising development, not politics. Prioritizing development over politics is crucial for the progress and well-being of Wassa Amenfi. By placing development as the primary goal, decisions can be made based on what is best for the community as a whole, rather than being driven by political agendas or personal interests. This can lead to more effective and sustainable development outcomes, as resources are allocated based on genuine needs and priorities. Ultimately, prioritizing development means working towards long-term progress that benefits everyone in the community, regardless of their political affiliations.

SUMMARY:
Creating change in situations of leadership failure or government abandonment requires perseverance, unity, and active community engagement. By taking collective action, communities in Wassa Amenfi can hold leaders accountable and work towards a better future. Community involvement and persistence are key to bringing about positive change. By working together and advocating for improved road infrastructure, Wassa Amenfi can create a safer and more accessible environment for everyone.

“The men who try to do something and fail are infinitely better than those who try to do nothing and succeed.”—Lloyd Jones.

 

Story by Prince Ayerakwa (CEO of PAZION MEDIA)

 

 

About admin

PAZION MEDIA is a news and media platform that seeks to sensitize, conscientize, inform, educate, promote businesses and entertain. The owner, Prince Ayerakwa is an approachable, pragmatic and sharp-witted graduate who is always conscious of his environment, and he is dedicated to giving meaningful and well-informed information on a timely basis. The hallmark of this media platform is giving readers "CR4" information. That is Credible, Regular, Relevant, Realistic and Reliable Information. He believes that service to humanity is our greatest task on earth. Send your stories through WhatsApp at 0546163213 or email (pazionmedia118@gmail.com)

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