Leadership of the Zongo Community in the Ashanti region has said it is not impressed with the work of the Inner City and Zongo Development Ministry.
The leaders observed that little has been achieved in the communities in terms of development and improvement in the lives of the people since the Ministry was created.
They believe the Ministry can do better to transform the Zongos, if education is prioritised and the locals are involved in the planning process.
Chief Osman Bin Ahmed, who speaks for the Sarkin Zongo in Kumasi, said that broader consultation is needed to ensure growth and development.
“We can see that the Zongo Ministry is only in Accra, they need to come to us and know our requirements, you cannot sit down in Accra and dictate for us.”
The Zongo communities in Ghana are one of the largest but underdeveloped areas in the country.
President Nana Akufo-Addo, on assumption of power, instituted the Inner City and Zongo Development Ministry in fulfillment of an election promise, to address the situation.
Three and a half years later, the target communities in Ashanti region say there is little to write home about development spearheaded by the Ministry.
Chief Ahmed said “we are not politicians so we say it as it is, the president set up the Zongo Ministry to tackle the problems of the Zongo Communities so it’s about time he (the minister) came to us to know what we need”.
He added that the Zongo Ministry operating only in Accra defeats its purpose.
He said that Zongo communities across the country have different problems, hence the ministry cannot apply solutions from Accra to areas in Kumasi.
Education of the Zongo Youth
Chief Ahmed said the focus of the Zongo Community should be higher education for the youth, who will in the future advance and facilitate development in their respective areas.
“We also want to see our people taken to countries like Cuba to read medicine, so they can come and help the community. They should also get the opportunity to read Engineering and other programs that at the end of the day will help the communities,” he said.
He made the comments when ex-President John Mahama donated a mini-bus and 50 bags of rice to the Zongo youth.
He said the Zongo Community appreciates such gesture but emphasised support, especially for higher education, must be the focus.
“We can say the donation is very good but as a leader, we want to see more scholarships for our people because the community is backwards if you compare with others…they always say that where there is education, there is development. So, yes, we need vehicles but we need a situation where our youth can receive higher education,” he said.
The vehicle donation by former President Mahama was in fulfillment of a promise he made to the people in 2016.