Strengthening the capacity of rural service centres for local level development: a case study of Yilo Krobo District, Eastern Region, Ghana

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Governments in the developing world face a major challenge in the provision of goods and services to their people, especially those in the rural areas. Resources are scarce and development cannot take place everywhere at the same time. This has a direct impact on local level development. Most of the strategies that have been implemented in the past have not been overwhelmingly successful because, among other things, they have not been designed to solve peculiar problems experienced by specific centres, but have rather been blanket measures. Rural service centres in Yilo Krobo district experience a myriad ofproblems such as a poor economic base, inadequate infrastructure and land, and uncoordinated development. All these problems have resulted in a failure by the centres to act as engines of growth and development in the rural areas. In order to address these problems, there is a need to come up with strategies which are applicable in the context of Yilo Krobo district. Strategies discussed range from promoting both agriculture and non-agricultural enterprises, undertaking radical changes to the current land tenure system, especially as it relates to land at and near the rural service centre. Another strategy is the promotion of local public-private partnerships between the district assembly and the people living at the rural service centres. If these strategies are implemented, then the rural service centres will be able to fulfil their potential role as engines of growth within the local and national economy. This would help in propelling Ghana to achieve its goal of becoming a middle income country by 2020.
A Thesis submitted to the Board of Postgraduate Studies, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Development Planning and Management, 2000