CAPITAL : Asamankese
It is located on the southern portion of the Eastern Region, and its about 75kilometers north-west of Accra.
has a land area of 1,018square kilometers
It shares common boundaries with seven (7) other districts namely;
- Kwaebibirem to the north
- Birim south to the west
- Agona Swedru, Ewutu Senya and Ga district to the south,
- Suhum Kraboa- coalter to the east and
- Akwapim –South to the east.
TOPOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE
The land is generally undulating with heights ranging between 60-460 meters above sea level. The highest point is the Atiwa Range and is located between Pabi and Wawase. The municipality lies within the wet semi- equatorial climatic zone. Rainfall is bi-modal with figures between 1,238mm and 1,660mm.Temperature ranges between 25.20C – 270C.
The soil in the municipality is well drained, rich and capable of supporting a wide range of crops – cocoa, coffee, citrus, oil palm, rubber, cassava, yam, plantain, maize and non-traditional crops like – tiger nuts, black pepper, ginger and sweet berry.
The soils are equally good for rice, sugar-cane and vegetable cultivation.
Gold deposits are located at Awaham, Akanteng and Kobriso. Diamond deposits are found at Akanteng and Anomakwadwo near Osenase, and clay deposits also located around Odumkyere - Darmang.
The major rivers are Abukyen, Ayensu and Supon. These rivers offer good Opportunities for fishing. The rivers can be harnessed for water supply and irrigation purposes. The Kwaku Sae waterfall is located at Kwaku sae, near Brekumanso. The Akanten and Aworotenteng waterfalls are both located in the Atewa Forest Range Reserves.
Pipe-borne and mechanized boreholes systems are operating at 6.9% and 24.1% levels respectively in the district. The major sources of potable water in the district are boreholes and wells. About 31% of the population has access to potable water.
The district has a total of 273km of access road network. The trunk road network is 73.5km. The condition of the remaining road network is very deplorable.
There are four major marketing centers in the municipality. They are at Asamankese, Adeiso, Osenase and Akanteng. The sphere of influence of these markets extends beyond the district to Suhum, Accra, Tema and Lome. The
PRODUCTION AND GAINFUL EMPLOYMENT
Agriculture is the major economic activity in the district and it employs 52.1% of the labour force. A baseline survey revealed that, generally large scale farming activities are limited in the municipality..
Production situation in the district is shown in the table below:
|ESTIMATED AREA (HA)||ESTIMATED YIELD (MT/HA)||PRODUCTION (MT)|
Source: MOFA SRID 2010
LAND TENURE SYSTEM
Farm lands in the district are acquired through inheritance, lease, family head, Purchase and chiefs in descending order of magnitude as indicated by the base-Line survey. About 33.0% through lease, 24.2% through family head, 9.1% through purchase and 3.0% through allocation by chiefs.
Farmers in the district have farm sizes raging from 0.2 hectare to over 2 hectares. The baseline survey indicates that West Akim is a district of medium size farms, the average farm size being 0.84 hectares. Field survey also shows that a majority of farmers, about 68.2% have 2 or more farms at different location. About 52% of the total land area of 1,018km2 is under cultivation. Most farmers are cultivating in 2 or 3 locations of an average of 0.83 ha in a sedentary farming system.
NUMBER OF HOLDERS IN VARIOUS AGE GROUPS
|S/NO||AGE GROUP||NUMBER OF HOLDERS|
Source: MOFA SRID 2010
These include inter alia, mono-crop rotation, agro-forestry, mixed cropping and mixed farming. These systems are modification of shifting cultivation and bush fallow systems
These forms of labour are employed in farming within the municipality, these are 53% rely on family labour, 40% on hired labour ad 7.0% on the ‘Nnoboa’ system for farming labour.
Cocoa which is an exportable crop and a major foreign exchange earner for the country is widely produced in the municipality.
The cocoa industry in the municipality is mostly handled by private farmers. The average farm size of the crop is 0.6 hectares. Marketing of the produce is done mainly through the Ghana Cocoa Marketing Company of COCOBOD and on a limited scale through private organization such as OLAM, FEDCO, KUAPA etc.
Oil palm equally abounds in the municipality . Tenera is mostly the variety grown and some peasant farmers have actually cultivated the crop in the gently sloping low lying but well drained sites. The crop is marketed by private farmers. Palm oil extraction is done locally and on small scale. There is one medium scale palm oil processing factory at Topease.
Citrus is also widely cultivated in the municipality.. The crop is cultivated and marketed by private peasant farmers.. Presently PINORA a private multinational company located at Asamankese is processing citrus concentrates for export.
The Agricultural Extension Services assists local farmers to increase agricultural production and to introduce farmers to new and improved technologies through training and farm demonstrations.
Livestock are kept by farmers who are also engaged in crop farming. The main animals kept by the farmers are sheep, goats, poultry and pigs. About 89% of livestock farmers rear sheep, goats and fowls using the backyards of their living areas. Poultry farming, the pre-occupation of 8.6% of farmers engaged in livestock farming is predominantly found in Asamankese, Adeiso and Mepom. Only about 2.6% of livestock farmers are engaged in piggery.
Perishable produce e.g. Vegetables and fruits cultivated in the municipality are sold fresh because there are no storage facilities for these staples and fruits. Maize is however stored in traditional barns and on the roofs of kitchen.. There are few small-scale agro-based processing industries processing products like corn dough, cassava dough, palm oil as well as local gin.
The veterinary Service Unit which is mainly concerned with animal health has as their aim, the strengthening of the development and improvement of livestock and poultry industry in the district. Filed and slaughter house activities occupy 85% of the working hours of the staff.
The survey revealed that, only about 20% of those who rear animals receive veterinary services.
In the West Akyem District, markets are organized on both daily and periodic basis. The main markets in the district where tolls are collected are located at Asamankese, Adeiso, Osenase, Akanteng and Abamkrom. Markets in the district that operate daily are Asamankese, Mepom, Adeiso, Topease, Osenase, Abamkrom, Bunso, Krodua, Brekumanso, Kumikrom, Oworam, Ekoso, Awaham, Asikasu, Akanteng, Esaase, Kwabaah, Quahie.
Bi-weekly markets which operate on Mondays and Thursdays are at Asmankese, Adeiso, Mepom and Abankrom. At Pabi the bi-weekly market operates on Tuesdays and Fridays and at Osenase, the market operates on Sundays, while that of Akanteng operates on Sunday and Wednesday.
Table shows the major markets, their market days and main food items that are common on these markets.
|MARKET CENTRE||MARKET DAYS||MAIN FOOD ITEM|
|Asamankese, Abamkrom, Adeiso, Mepom||Mondays and Thursdays||Maize, Cassava, Plantain, Cocoyam, Pepper, Garden Eggs, Okro, Palm fruits, Palm oil, Gari.|
|Pabi||Tuesday and Friday||Cassava, Plantain, Cocoyam|
|Akanteng||Sundays and Wednesday||Plantain & Cocoyam|
|Osenase||Sundays||Maize, Cassava, Plantain, Cocoyam etc.|
Source: MOFA, West Akim District, October, 2010