PHYSICAL AND NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
LOCATION AND SIZE:
Kwabre East District was part of the former Kwabre District, which was carved out of the former Kwabre Sekyere District in 1988. It became Kwabre East Municipal after the creation of Afigya Kwabre District in 2008. It is located almost at the central portion of the Ashanti region. It is within latitudes 60 45’ and 60 50’ North and longitudes 10 30’ and 1035’ West.
The District shares common boundaries with Sekyere South District to the North; Kumasi Metropolis to the South; Ejisu Juaben District to the East and Afigya Kwabre District to the West. The District has a total land area of 148 square kilometres constituting about 0.06% of the total land area of Ashanti Region (24,389 sq. km.).The Kwabre East Municipal is part of the Greater Kumasi City Region, which is made up of Kumasi Metropolis and the surrounding Districts (See Figure 1). The District capital, Mamponteng, is approximately 14.5 kilometres from Kumasi to the North-east. There are 42 settlements, administered under 1 parliamentary constituency, 2 Town Councils, 4 Area Councils and 31 Electoral Areas.
IMPLICATION OF LOCATION TO DEVELOPMENT
The District’s proximity to Kumasi, the Regional capital, makes it easy to access some specialized high level commercial, health, administrative, financial and other services.
The rural folks are gradually losing their farm lands to residential developers and this has made the acquisition of land very expensive. As most parts of the District is becoming urbanized, there is pressure on the existing social facilities.
The small size of district as at now will make resource allocation relatively easy for accelerated development of the District.
CLIMATE AND VEGETATION:
The District is located within the Wet Semi-Equatorial Climatic Region with double rainfall regimes. The first rainy season begins from April to June with the heaviest rainfall occurring in June. The second rainy season is from September to October. The dry season begins in November and ends in February. The average annual rainfall is between 125mm and 175mm with relative humidity of 75 – 80 percent during the rainy season and 70 – 72 percent during the dry season.
The double rainfall pattern in the district encourages the cultivation of both cash and food crops two times in a year. The mean annual temperature is about 300C with the lowest about 26. 10C. The rainfall regimes and adequate sunshine are suitable for food and cash crop production. Extensive dry season however leads to long periods of drought and retards farming activities in that period.
The major vegetation types are semi-deciduous forests and grasslands. Indiscriminate felling of trees, continuous cultivation and the increasing proportion of land for settlement purposes have left very little of the original forest to be found only along the river courses and northern fringes of the District. That notwithstanding, all the vegetation types are cultivable and thus useful for agricultural purposes
IMPLICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT
The double rainfall regimes experienced by the District makes it possible for farmers to cultivate both food and cash crops two times in a year. Extensively dry season however may lead to long period of drought and retards farming activities in the period.
As a result of human activities namely farming, bush burning and excessive logging most of the forest cover is lost. In spite of this, the available lands still provide potential for agricultural development.
CONDITIONS OF THE NATURAL ENVIRONMENT
The predominant vegetation type in the District is the Moist Semi-Deciduous Forest with vast arable lands for agricultural purposes. Granitic outcrops, clay and sand deposits are other natural resources in the District whilst diamond deposits have been discovered at Safo, gold deposits have been located at Sakra Wonoo, and on the banks of Bomonwe stream at the outskirts of Adanwomase.
Human activities have however, altered the natural environment drastically. Indiscriminate felling of trees for timber and fuel wood, continuous cultivation and incidents of bush burning which have become ritualized have left very little of the original forest mostly found along river courses. With the current population density of over 691.28 persons per sq. km and increasing demand for land for residential purposes, available land for agriculture has been reducing whilst natural vegetation has been depleted. In most places tall grass of the transition type litter the surface. The rocky hills have impacted negatively on the environment in the western sections of the District.
Aggressive sandwinning along streambeds have laid large portion of the land bare and degraded whilst most streams have become seasonal. The naturally preserved Antoa Shrine and forest remains a major natural resource with aesthetic values. In some areas, efforts have been made by individuals to regenerate forests through the cultivation of teak plantations. Large tracts of land are also cultivated in palm plantations and these can be found in virtually all parts of the District.
The absence of a forestry regulatory body and framework has made compliance to land use schemes problematic. The monitoring of levels of degradation of the environment has become more difficult in the absence of an ecological zoning of the area.
IMPLICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT
Human activities have changed the natural environment drastically. Indiscriminate felling of trees for timber and fuel wood, continuous cultivation and incidents of bush burning which has become ritualized have left very little of the original forest mostly found along river courses. With the current population density of over 691.28 persons per square kilometres and increasing demand for land for residential purposes, available land agriculture land has been reducing whilst natural vegetation has been depleted.
CONDITIONS OF THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT
In rural areas, many houses consist of mud walls with rusted metal roofing sheets. Many of these have bathrooms made of old roofing sheets outside the houses. It is however worthy of note that new sandcrete block with relatively new roofing sheets are replacing the old dilapidated sections of some houses in rural areas. Foundations of some old buildings have become exposed and hanging due to long neglect and exposure. Most urban towns in the District have well laid out plans, which are used in controlling development especially for housing and provision of sanitation, health and educational infrastructure.
On the other hand, large open spaces in urban areas are dotted with heaps of refuse very close to residential areas. Most communities do not have properly constructed drainage systems except a few like Mamponteng, Kenyase, Ntonso and Ahwiaa. Due to excessive erosion in the rural and urban communities, waste water from households gather in gullies and become breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other disease vectors.
IMPLICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT
Many of the old buildings in both rural and urban areas have become exposed and hanging due to long neglect and exposure. Due to excessive erosion in rural and urban activities waste water from households gather in gullies become breeding grounds for mosquitoes and other disease vectors.
RELIEF AND DRAINAGE
The topography exhibits diverse patterns with land heights ranging between 305 metres and 335m above sea level in the eastern portion with large isolated hilly outcrops, whilst the western boundary is generally undulating with areas below 290m above sea level.
The district is well drained with a number of streams taking their source from the eastern highland flowing southeast and the rocky lulls of the west depicting dendritic patterns. Notable streams are Akawsua, Anyinasu, Daku Wiwi, Ayiresua, Owai, Atonsu, Akasu, Krowa and Afiam, almost all of which are perennial.
SOIL AND AGRICULTURAL LAND USE
Soils of varied complex associations found in the District include the Kumasi – Offin and Bomso – Offin Compound Associations Boamang Simple Associations and Nyanoa – Tinkong Simple Association.
Adequate knowledge of the nature of the soil would enable the farmers to select the type of crops suitable for cultivation.
The Kumasi - Offin Compound Association supports food crops like plantain, cocoyam and maize.
For example the Boaman Simple Association supports cocoa and other tree crops. Again, the Nyanoa – Tinkong Simple Association is not very good for agriculture but may support cocoa while having a dense forest and a lot of moisture.
IMPLICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT
The predominant vegetation types found in the District are Moist – Semi Deciduous Forest and isolated grassland. Continuous felling of trees has deprived the District of its valuable tree species and other forest products. Continuous cultivation and the bush burning have affected the vegetation belt greatly, resulting in very little of the original forest along river courses remaining.
AESTHETIC FEATURES AND LAND MANAGEMENT
The District is the home of kente and other traditional cloths. Adanwomase can be singled out for its popularity in the weaving industry. Kente has reached most parts of the world and every year many tourists visit these settlements to acquaint themselves with information about the industry.
Other kente weaving settlements include Sakra Wonoo, Abira, Kasaam and Bamang. Ahwiaa is also noted for wood carvings and attract a lot of tourist. Ntonso is also noted for its famous Adinkra Industry. Antoa and Abira are also noted for the Antoa Shrine and the training of fetish priests respectively.
Land in the District is owned by the traditional authorities. Those who want to engage in farming are given the land to farm on either the abunu or abusa system. This system makes it difficult for farmers to increase production on the large scale and if the District wants to make any headway in agriculture production then it has to legally acquire some of these lands as bank which can be readily and easily released for farming purposes.
IMPLICATION FOR DEVELOPMENT
The District is noted for traditional handicraft activities like kente weaving, Adinkra weaving and woodcarving. These traditional handicraft activities when well developed will serve as a major source of employment to the numerous youth and also serve as a tourist destination for foreign and local tourists.
Land is owned by the traditional authorities who release it to prospective farmers on the abunu and abusa systems. As a result of these systems it becomes very difficult for the farmers to get the large tracts of land for commercial farming activities. Again land for residential accommodation is competing favourably with land for agriculture and as a result availability of land for agriculture is dwindling.
GEOLOGY AND MINERALS
The main rock types found in the District are biotite, granite and granodiorites whose weathered products are fine textured granitic soils found in areas like Antoa, Abira, Sakra Wonoo, Wadie Adwumakase and Kenyase. Biotite gneiss and granitised biotites have formed a number of large rocky outcrops in Kenyase and Aboaso. Low-grade alluvial gold deposits have been sited at Sakra Wonoo. Diamonds have also been located at Safo and Kasaam in the northeast. Clay and sand deposits are found in the central portion of the District
IMPLICATIONS FOR DEVELOPMENT
The siting of low – grade alluvial gold deposits at Sakra Wonoo and the location of Diamonds at Safo and Kasaam when well exploited will be a major source for employment of the youth and also increase the revenue base of the District. However, the over exploitation of the minerals may lead to environmental degradation
Date Created : 11/18/2017 4:51:28 AM