Small and Medium Scale Entrepreneurs (SMEs) in the Ashanti region, have called for the reorientation of the metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies to focus on the development and expansion of businesses in their respective areas.
According to them, it was time the assemblies were made to be proactive on issues that would promote business in to reduce poverty among the people and generate adequate revenue for infrastructural development.
Speaking to the Ghana News Agency on their expectations of the assemblies under the new government, a cross section of entrepreneurs said that district assemblies should be made to fulfill their mandate as provided in section 10 (3) b and c of the Local Government Act 1993, Act 462.
Sub-section 3 'b' states that district assemblies should "formulate and execute plans, programmes and strategies for effective mobilization of the resources necessary for the overall development of the district".
Sub-section 3 'c' also states that district assemblies should "promote and support productive activities and social development in the districts and remove any obstacle to initiative and development".
Nana Osei Awuah, a small scale shoe manufacturer at Tafo in Kumasi, said that the government should encourage the assemblies to fulfill this mandate by removing all barriers that affected their operations.
He said the assemblies should go beyond the construction of market stores and stalls and also liaise with entrepreneurs to identify regulatory and bureaucratic issues that affected the smooth operations and growth of SMEs.
Mr Akwasi fofie, a fashion designer at Mamponteng in the Kwabre district, said the growth and expansion of SMEs at the local level would benefit the entrepreneurs and district assemblies since they would derive adequate internally generated revenue for development.
He said district assemblies had failed to recognize SMEs as the most important partners in development and hoped the trend would change with the incoming of new District Chief Executives (DCEs).
Fofie appealed to President John Evans Atta Mills to appoint business oriented people as DCEs and had SMEs development in mind to achieve the desire of the government to create more jobs for the youth, especially at the local levels.
Madam Elizabeth Owusu, a chop bar operator at Adum, Kumasi, said the new DCEs should be able to identify potential income generating ventures in their areas and assist the people to invest and create jobs for the people.