Alhaji Issahaku Tahiru Moomin, the Wa Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), has commended Ieper city in Belgium for supporting the development agenda of the Municipal despite the global economic downturn.

“Indeed, we recognised that in spite of the global economic downturn, the people of Ieper sacrificed more by going the extra mile to remit part of their hard earned incomes to support our development cause,” he said.

Alhaji Moomin gave the commendation during the 14th Anniversary Celebration of the Ieper – Wa Sister City Relations in Wa.

He said through the provision of litter bins and other sanitary materials, open and careless disposal of solid waste had drastically reduced, thereby making Wa the only city without heaps of refuse in the whole of the northern sector.

Alhaji Moomin also mentioned the establishment of the Wa Fruit Juice Factory to support local economic development and the provision of essential health equipment to improve working conditions at the Upper West Regional Hospital as some of the fruits of the relationship.

The Wa slaughter house, Nusrat Jahan College of Education, Wa Senior High School (SHS), Wa Prisons, Guli and Dondoli communities all benefited from the water systems provided by the Ieper people, he said.

He assured the people of Ieper city that the Municipality would demonstrate good faith in handling whatever development interventions in order to build, maintain and sustain the culture of mutual trust which existed between the two cities for the past 14 years.

Mr. Amidu Chinnia Issahaku, Acting Upper West Regional Minister said government recognised the fact that through sister city relations, long term international bond of friendship were often created, hence his commendation for the Ieper – Wa Sister City Relations.

He said government was therefore committed to ensuring that appropriate policies, procedures and monitoring arrangements were in place to facilitate and support such collaborations and relationships.

Mr Issahaku therefore recommended lots of exchange programmes for members of both cities to share ideas and experiences towards the development of the people and the cities.

“I know there have been a lot of educational exchanges but let us go beyond that and add professional exchanges, medical exchanges and humanitarian systems as well as economic development programmes”, he said.

Mr. Jeff Verschoore, Deputy Mayor of Ieper City noted that being a border city, they had always been a conflict zone and had indeed suffered destruction at least three times in history with the most famous one being the First World War.
He said they rebuilt but lost at least 50 percent of its population, adding that since then the city had dedicated itself since 1985 as a city of peace to show to the world what it was to live in peace.

The Deputy Mayor noted that to be a city of peace, it was important to be a hospitable city through helping others with the means they had, hence the Ieper – Wa Sister City Relations.

Madam Veronic Lewyllie, Coordinator of Ieper – Wa Sister City Relations said through the relations, they had also learnt a lot from the people of Wa and hoped that the relationship would stand the test of time for the mutual benefit of the two people.

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