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Members of the Manya Krobo Municipal Assembly have been divided over the Assembly’s legibility to charge revenue on funerals to be held within the municipality. This cropped up during the assembly’s second major meeting on Thursday.
The division arose following a call by the Municipal Chief Executive of the Lower Manya Krobo Municipal assembly, Hon. Simon Kwaku Tetteh on assembly members to consider supporting a proposed ‘funeral levy’ he had submitted. According to the MCE, the levy, if implemented, would enable the assembly raise enough revenue to develop the Municipality.
While the Assembly collects monies from families whose relatives are deceased for the purposes of interment at the public cemeteries at the death registration office, citizens are going to be slapped with a new ‘illegitimate’ charge of GHC 50.00 for every funeral registered at the Births and Deaths Registry of the Assembly.
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Mr. Emmanuel Siakwa who is a government appointee of the house however, objected to the Municipal Chief Executive’s proposal saying its illegal since the Assembly owns no responsibility in maintaining homes and places for funerals in the various communities.
Hon. Ayerh Kofi Zando, member for Odumase North Electoral Area on the other hand opined that the said amount must be charged because public places such as school parks, lorry parks, community durbar grounds and other places are always used for free by the public without the Assembly collecting any revenues.
Meanwhile, also opposed to the proposal were Hon. Samuel Torgbor and Hon. Fredrick Matey, members for Nuaso Old Town and Kpongunor West Electoral Areas respectively. The two members based their objection on the possibility of a misunderstanding between traditional authorities and the assembly.
The two argued that bereaved families were already ‘paying’ for the use of these grounds in the form of bottles of drinks on demand from the chiefs who own and control these places and thus any attempts by the assembly to take over that role could spark disputes between the two sides of authorities.
But Municipal Chief Executive of the Lower Manya Krobo Municipal assembly, Hon. Simon Kwaku Tetteh, maintained his grounds and appealed to the 41 Assembly members to accept the Assembly’s proposal to enable it get enough revenue to develop the Municipality.
The MCE had the support of the Presiding Member of the House, Hon. Awule Mensah who also insisted that the proposal should hold ‘in the best interest of revenue mobilization for the municipality.’
The Lower Manya Krobo Municipal Assembly on Thursday 19, October 2017, had its second major meeting without members from 4 electoral areas namely; Koletsom, Mampong, Okwenya and Nuaso Newtown Electoral Areas.
While Koletsom, Mampong and Okwenya Electoral Areas remain without assembly members since the demise of their members, Nuaso Newtown Electoral Area on the other hand is yet to get replacement after their member was elevated to the status of a MCE.
Another development during the meeting was the official introduction of the new Municipal Coordinating Director, Mrs. Jemima Aperdu to members.
Meanwhile, Hon. Mensah Awule who was elected Presiding Member for the Assembly during the last sitting in August this year, was sworn into office by his Lordship Frank Y. Gbergby who is the Presiding Judge of the Odumase Circuit Court.
The meeting brought together both elected and government appointee assembly members, Municipal Police Commanders from Akuse and Odumase, Fire Service commander, and other Heads of Department under the Municipality.
Proceedings were however adjourned to Friday to pave way for the MCE’s sessional address and deliberations and approval of the assembly’s budget.
Source: mynewsghana.com//Michael Oberteye//[email protected]