It’s official! Yesterday’s referendum was a success and we are now in the North East Region. Five other new regions were also created.
In our region we had 81% voter turn out (compared to 68% in the last presidential election) and an overwhelming 99% voting YES for the North East Region.
The NaYiri had initiated the request for the region and really pushed for its creation. He even left the palace yesterday to go to his polling station to vote in person (normally they bring a ballot to him at the palace).
Today they had a big press conference at the palace and the NaYiri strongly advised that the government appoint Nalerigu to be the new regional capital. There is a bit of a debate as to whether or not it should be in Gambaga (our current district capital) or Nalerigu. One rumor is that they will split East Mamprusi District so that Gambaga can remain the capital of a new district and Nalerigu can assume the district/regional capital in East Mamprusi District and North East Region.
Why are people so excited about the new region?
Most people in our community are convinced that the new region will bring development and jobs to the area. We’ll certainly get more government offices (DVLA, Immigration, Police HQ, etc…) and that will provide some jobs – though Ghana tends to post government officers from other regions instead of using locals.
Paved roads are high on the list of expected improvements. The dirt road that loops from Nalerigu to Nakpanduri to Gbintiri and back is in dire need of improvement.
There’s also a rumor that Melcom, Ghana’s largest department store chain, has already bought land in town on which to build a store. My son was most excited about that!
I’m just hoping we get a decent bank with an ATM!