Proponents of the proposed Oti Region have stepped up their campaign for ‘Yes’ votes ahead of the December 27 referendum.
With barely a week to the referendum for the creation of regions, there is great momentum in the northern sector of the Volta Region towards the ‘Yes’ campaign.
The campaign is also to get the people to come out in their numbers to exercise their civic responsibility by participating massively in the referendum.
On Saturday, campaigners for the new regions mounted a float to create awareness and sensitize the people.
For the creation of a region to be successful, there has to be at least an 80% voter endorsement while not less than 50% of registered voters in the area must turn out to vote.
Coordinator of the Santrokofi area, Nana Kofi Mintah believes a vote for an Oti Region means a step towards the development of the Northern part of the Volta Region.
“We started fighting for this, forty years ago. We have seen that this is the right time we can come in to see to it that we separate the Oti region from Southern Volta. It is not a matter of us being different from the Volta Region but rather being on our own and getting development for ourselves. So, you are here to educate our people on why we must get our own region. There is more development in the Southern part of the Volta Region than the Northern part.”
There is also a campaign for the creation of the new district to be carved out of the Hohoe municipality.
Coordinator of Soab, Paul Adu Sumevi has also given full backing for the new region because it will bring relief to the residents.
“We have a regional allocation in the decentralisation process. So if there are allocations for two regions now, then allocation for the new region will now come and then the district within the Oti enclave will also be supervised. It will increase manpower for development and employment because we will have our own regional allocation. This is why we are craving to have the second region.
The Nifahene of Guan-Kyode Traditional Area in the Nkwanta South Municipality of the Volta Region, Nana Sey Mireku invoked curses on persons who oppose the creation of the Oti Region out of the Volta Region.
The Chief, while pouring libation to seek spiritual support from the gods and praying for the impending creation of the new region said wished doom upon all persons who were working against the creation of the new region.
He said the creation of the region is critical to residents as the area has been neglected for too long.
Referring to some persons in the southern part of the Volta Region, Nana Sey Mireku called on the gods to strike down all opponents to the move adding that such people did not wish for the welfare of the people in the Oti area.
He warned chiefs from the south to stop claiming ownership of lands in the northern part of the Volta Region saying “they have no land here.”
People in the southern part of the Volta region, are against the creation saying the government should instead ensure decentralization in the northern areas to foster development rather than creating a new region.
They also called for the referendum to be extended to the southern areas and not only in the Oti enclave.
Ahead of the referendum, most parts of northern Volta have been plastered with billboards and posters advocating for the creation of the region.
The Chiefs of the area led by Nana Besemuna III of Krachi have also inaugurated a nine-member committee to spearhead the campaign ahead of the referendum.