The Queenmothers Association in the Oti Region would forever remember the late former President J.J Rawlings for his efforts to provide them with an improved income generating project to enhance the socio-economic lives of its members, and have described his sudden departure as a big loss, not only to the nation, but also to the Oti Region Queenmothers Association in particular.
Former President Rawlings, the Oti Queenmothers explained, had put them in touch with foreign non-governmental organisations, which provided agro-processing equipment for the establishment of an agro-processing factory for the queenmothers, who would also be engaged in the cultivation of palm, orange and cassava for local consumption and export.
Speaking at a durbar to break the ground for work to start on the construction of the factory at Jasikan, the President of the Oti Region Queenmothers Association, Nana Otubea II, who is also the Paramount Queenmother of the Nkonya Traditional Area, said the ground breaking was planned long ago, but the death of the mother of the late former President had delayed the project, as the time slated for the start coincided with his mother’s death.
Nana Otubea continued that the very week that the late former President Rawlings planned to cut the sod for work to commence after the burial of his mother was when the sad news was reported about his death.
The President of the Oti Queenmothers Association said, however, that even though the initiator of the project had passed on, his wife, Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, assured them that the project, as planned by her husband, would not change, and that everything to make it successful had been made available by the former President before his demise, therefore, there was no need to delay the project.
Nana Otubea noted that, when completed, the factory would get its raw materials from all the traditional areas in the region, because various plantations would be established to produce cassava, palm and orange, where they would grow effectively, to feed the factory at Jasikan.
She further revealed that various soft drinks would be made out of the orange, while palm oil, ethanol, and gari would be produced as well.
She said a feasibility study conducted showed that the factory would become more viable, as it already has existing local markets, adding that the immediate market in the region has been identified as all the Senior High Schools, with the objective of providing palm-oil and gari for them, while ethanol would be sold to industries in the country and for export.
A representative of Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings, Alhaji Mohammed Frimpong, who is the General Secretary of the National Democratic Party (NDP), described the late former President Rawlings as a selfless person who spent all his life rendering service to humanity, and even his development projects were still being carried out after his death, saying he would be remembered forever.
He said added that the agro-processing factory was carefully chosen by the former President to help address the development needs of the people in the rural areas through the queenmothers, and noted that the project was promising, since there was no problem relating to land.
Alhaji Mohammed Frimpong urged the Oti Region Queenmothers Association to uphold the principles of transparency, accountability and probity, which were the values of the late former President in all their activities to ensure success, stressing that, when completed, the agro-industry would also be expanded to include an agro-vocational institute to facilitate the training of the youth, particularly young women, in various vocational skills.
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