Mr Amidu Chinnia Issahaku, the Acting Upper West Regional Minister, has appealed to the people of the region to respect diversity as they uphold and cherish their individual cultures for the sustenance of peace and security.

“I therefore wish to appeal to all of you that whilst upholding and cherishing your individual cultures, let us respect other cultures so that together we can develop as a people peacefully in the midst of diversity”.

Mr Issahaku made the appeal during the climax of the annual Bon-Ngo Festival of the Chiefs and people of the Jirapa Traditional Area in Jirapa in the Jirapa Municipality.

He said respecting cultural diversity remained the best way to mix and make peace with others for nation building and commended the people of Jirapa for creating and sustaining the festival over the years which according to the Minister had helped in nurturing the prevailing peace in the Area.

“As you are aware, there cannot be any meaningful development in an area where there is no peace. Peace is therefore a pre-requisite for development”, he said.

The initiative, he noted, was in line with the government policy to give the Arts and Culture Industry the requisite attention and incentives to thrive and create jobs and wealth.

He said government was committed to ensuring better standard of living for Ghanaians and encouraged the youth to embrace the flagship programmes being rolled out especially the “Planting for Food and Jobs” initiative.

The Free Senior High School policy had come to stay, the “One Village, One Dam” policy which promised to create lots of employment opportunities for the teeming youth was on its final stage to take off, Mr Issahaku said.

He announced that government has rolled out a programme under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) with an amount of 1,160 million Euros earmarked for agricultural investment in the Savannah Ecological Zone of Ghana.

The programme aims at contributing to the development of a sustainable, resilient and modernised agriculture in the zone.

He appealed to the chiefs to reposition their people to take advantage of the programme.

The theme for this year’s celebration of the Bon-Ngo Festival was: “The Role of Bon-Ngo in the Socio-Economic Development of the Jirapa Traditional Council”.

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