Bolgatanga, Mr Rockson Ayine Bukari, the Upper East Regional Minister, has appealed to the fifteen members of Parliament in the region to focus on serving the region and help accelerate its development.
The Regional Minister, who made the call during the visit of the Managers of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) reminded the MPs that they were elected by their constituents to provide leadership that would bring about development.
He said one of the areas that needed more re-tooling was the NHIS and appealed to the MPs to help by lobbying and utilizing their MP Common Fund on health to boost health service delivery in their constituencies and the region as a whole.
“You are MPs for the region and were elected to serve the interest of your constituents and the region as a whole and not your individual parties. It is, therefore, imperative to put behind your partisan interest and join forces with government to see how we can all help improve the lot of our people”, he said.
The Regional Minister said one of the major problems that was likely to undermine development in the region was the problem of land tenure system and called on the MPs and all stakeholders in the region to sensitize their community members on the need to release land for development projects.
He said the ‘One Village, One Dam, One District One factory’ and Planting For Food and Jobs policies could not be implemented successfully if community members were not willing to release land for such projects.
The Regional Manager called on the managers of the Scheme to be mindful during the enrolment of beneficiaries so as not to bloat the registers with foreigners.
He said unlike other regions, the Upper East Region had a peculiar problem and urged the managers to place a special focus on the health needs of the people.
Enumerating some of the challenges encountered by the Scheme in the Region, Mr Sebastian Alagpulinsa, the Regional Director of the Scheme, said ICT access was the main challenge and this made the processing of claims of beneficiaries difficult.
The Regional Director told the Regional Minister that in spite of the challenges, the Scheme over the years had been performing creditably and mentioned for instance that in the year 2016 it exceeded the national target registration of indigenes of 158,571 and registered 182,904 representing an excess of 11.5 per cent.
“Also as a performance indicator, the region was given a target of 332,859 school children to be registered under the Scheme and 281,061 were achieved representing 84 per cent”, he said.
Source: Ghana News Agency