Population Size and Growth Rates
The 2000 Population and Housing Census put the District’s population at 102,449, 2006 as 118,809 and 2009 as 127,945. The district population is currently estimated to be 6.4% of the regional population. The share of the district’s population to the regional population increased from 4.68% in 1960 to 5.4% in 1970 but decreased to 4 .7% in 1984 and then increased to 6.4% in 2000. The population growth rate is estimated at 2.5% as against 2.4% of that of the region and 2.5 of nationalWith a given population growth rate of 2.5% (using the exponential growth formula); it is estimated that the District’s population would be 131,143 in 2010, 134,421 in 2011, 137,783 in 2012, and 141,227 in 2013, respectively. The projected population for 22 selected communities in the District is as shown in the table below.
A significant characteristic of the district population is high rate of emigration of the Gomoas. The “Gomoa Two Weeks” – A two week home-coming of Gomoa migrants to have family re-unions and participate in funerals and festivals attest to permanent migrant nature of the Gomoas. It is observed that the migration trend is heaviest towards the cocoa growing areas of other districts and regions.The “Gomoa Two Weeks” could be utilized by the people and the authorities for development oriented activities in the district. One main concern of the district is to create avenues to attract the migrants especially the youth through employment and investment.
Over the years, the Gomoa East District has had higher population density than the region and the nation. The population density of the district increased from 100.5 persons per km² in 2000. There is the need to increase facilities and to introduce appropriate technology to avert subsequent pressure on the available resources.
Age And Sex Composition
The age-sex composition of the population is of much importance in the planning process. It affords the opportunity to know the proportion of females to males with their respective ages to ascertain which segments of the ages and sexes need much attention and the proportion that has the ability or potential to facilitate the implementation of development plans and projects. Over the years the female population has been higher than that of the male population at all levels. There has not been any significant increase or decrease in the sex ratio.
The above ratio figures show that in 1984 for example, for every 100 males there was a corresponding 115 females. Though the situation could be likened to the national situation, the huge difference could be explained by the fact that more males than females migrate to other regions. About 37.6% of the populations are within the 0 - 14 broad age group cohort as compared to 43.7% and 41.4% for the region and national respectively. The old age (60+ years) for the District is slightly lower (3.3%) than for the regional and national levels.
This is an indication that there is low life expectancy and the level of poverty in the district compared to the regional and national situation. However, the active population 15 – 64 has as high as 59.1%. Nevertheless, the normal situation is tapering of the pyramid at the top. In this regard, there is the need to institute old-age programmes such as social security, pension leisure and welfare programmes. Also there should be birth control measures put in place for example; family planning, HIV/AIDs campaign and others. The reasons are that the population is youthful, more female than males and therefore high fertility rate.
Labour Force And Dependency Ratio
The potential labour force refers to people between the age group of 15-64 years who normally form the active population. The size of labour force determines the proportion of the age dependency. It is very necessary for the district to have desired labour force to pursue viable economic activities for development. Thus a high potential labour force would imply low age dependency ratio. The Gomoa East District has a potential labour force of 59.1% compared to the national figure of 53.3% and regional figure of 51.2% signifying a high proportion of the population that has to be economically engaged.
Dependency is of two types namely age dependency and economic dependency.The age and economic dependency of the district are 1:0.71 and 1:1.15 respectively compared with the regional figure of 1:0.83 and 1:1.22 and national figure of 1:0.87 and 1:1.31 respectively. The figures above suggest that, in terms of age dependency, the district has fewer burdens than the region and the nation whereas for the economic dependency ratio the district has a high figure. The district has a higher potential labour force but lower employment levels than the region. There is therefore, the need for a critical look at the economic activities in the district to prevent lower standard of living.
Household Size And its Distribution
A household can be defined as the number of people identified to be living together and sharing a common resource. The average household size for the district in 1984 was 6.8 and it is estimated to be at 4.4 in 2009. This suggests that there has been a drastic reduction in the birth rate. It also suggests less pressure on household incomes and therefore more savings can be made for investment all things being equal.
The district figure compares favourably with the national figure of 5.24 persons. However, the household size varies greatly within the district, with the lowest being 3.7 at Gomoa Aboso and highest being 6.1 at Budumburam likely to be explained by the refugee status of the community. Nonetheless, large household sizes often impose great burdens on the household heads unless a large proportion of the household members are working.
Again, the 2000 Population and Housing Census revealed that females head most of the households in Gomoa East. This trend may also account for the high level of poverty in the district since most of these women do not have men to support them. It is therefore very heartening that the government and its partners like the International Labour Organisation (ILO) have instituted programmes such as the Decent Work Ghana Country Programme (DWGCP) and National Youth Employment Programme (NYEP) to support women and the youth.
The number of towns in the region and district has been increasing over the years. The region had 19 urban centres in 1960, 21 in 1970, 25 in 1984 and 39 in 2000. The district had two urban centres as per the 2000 census. By population, the district has two urban areas in 2000 and even now out of the total 87 communities.
There has not been any significant change in the rural-urban split of the district population. These figures suggest that about 97.7% of the district population live in the rural areas. The situation does not present the district at a ground level for the provision of basic and/or higher order services because most of these services require a standard of threshold populations. The district has an average urbanization rate of 2.3% compared to the national average rate of 2.16%. This is in line with the government’s urbanization policy.
Gomoa East District is made up of 86 settlements covering an estimated 44,467.9 hectares and an area of 449.63 square kilometres. According to the 2000 population and housing census (2000 PHC) and the definition of an urban town (with population 5000 and over); Budumburam and Nyanyano according to the criteria are the two urban settlements within the District with population of 18,713 and 7,139 respectively. Again with the creation of the District with Afransi as the District Capital, it is classified as the major settlement despite the (2000 PHC) being 3,435. The other settlements exhibit the rural characteristics in nature with its predominant occupation of the inhabitants being agriculture.
The district exhibits the characteristics of both urban and rural settlements, with reference to population and functionality. The three major urban communities in terms of functionality and population in the district are Budumburam, Nyanyano and Afransi. However it is worth noting that Gomoa Fetteh is noted for its tourism facilities and services, hence attracting tourist and the urban population to the area, despite it exhibiting the traditional lifestyle.
Though Afransi is considered as an urban community based on its functionality it does not exhibit the common characteristics of an urbanizing community. Its attraction of development is not as rapid as that of Gomoa Fetteh, Gomoa Potsin, Gomoa Dominase and Pomadze despite it being the seat of government/District Capital. It presently depends on Swedru, Winneba and Kasoa Township for most of its services.However it is presently serving as an administrative and dormitory town. Presently, Budumburam Township is exhibiting some characteristics of a typically rapid urbanizing community in the district. The factors accounting for this phenomenon include the following;
- Nearness to Kasoa and Accra (Capital City),
- Peri-Urban nature and dormitory town for the urban population in Accra (City Centre) and
- Its comparatively peaceful/serene environment and low land price away from congestion in Accra (City Centre).
Nyanyano presently has most of the urban facilities and services. It is also the main fishing community in the districts, frantic efforts is being put in place for the needed attention and investment it deserves to boost the fishing industry. The community is also the main salt mining area in the district. Plans are underway to boost the salt industry and create the enabling environment to attract investment in the area. This would go a long way to improve the economic activity in the area and reduce the incidence of poverty in the area and district as a whole. It is again worth noting that the area is suitable for tourism industry. This when improved would serve as an important employment opportunity for citizens of the community and hence increase income levels coupled with the necessary infrastructure development.
Gomoa Fetteh can best be described as a tourism community although it has an active fishing industry, since it attracts international and local tourists into the area mainly because of its exquisite sand beaches and landscape. It also serves as a holiday centre of the working class. It is interesting to note that the mixture of the traditional life and the tourism nature gives it a unique atmosphere equivalent to that of the country side settlement peculiar to the developed countries. It should be noted that the environment here is likely to attract the urban population to settle in this community which would in the future defeat the current status, which is most appealing to international tourist.
Maintaining the atmosphere and protecting it from undue urbanization pressures would create an employment opportunity for the indigenes and increase their standard of living. It is also important to note that smaller communities in the district such as Gomoa Dominase and Gomoa Potsin as well as Pomadze are growth poles in the District due to their nearness to the N1 and the first class Swedru road. However rural communities like Akotsi, Ojobi, Gomoa Amoanda, Kweikrom and Fawomanye requires the needed support in terms of services and infrastructure to supports its future population since it has a potential for growth due to it nearness to Kasoa and Budumburam.
Direction of growth in the District
Spatially, the direction of growth for the district is towards the NI road and the Swedru road where we have settlement such as the Gomoa Dominase, Gomoa Potsin, Gomoa Budumburam, Gomoa Fetteh, Fetteh Kakraba, Asebu, Pomadze, Aboaso, Benso, Akyease and Besease. Presently there is an intended five star hotel development at Gomoa Potsin and estate development at Gomoa Fetteh. These settlements therefore require urgent and effective land use plans to cater for and ensure a balance between enabling development to take place and conserving and protecting the environment to prevent future uncontrolled development.
The district is bounded on the North by Awutu Senya District, North West by Agona East and West District, on the West by Gomoa West District, on the East by Ga South and on the south by the Gulf of Guinea, Effutu Municipal and part of Awutu Senya District.
- Functionally the district serves as a food basket (vegetables, rice, cassava, Plantain, yam and maize) to the adjoining districts.
- The Effutu Municipality also provides educational service (secondary schools, nursing training, tertiary education and other sand witch courses), fishing and salt produce to the district.
- Awutu Senya serves as a trading centre for the district due to its notable Kasoa and Bawjiase Markets.
- The district also provides tourism services to the adjoining districts and beyond.
- The district provides fish and salt to other adjoining district through the Nyanyano fishing and salt industries and Fetteh for fishing.
Functionality of settlements
Services available in the district vary widely. The analysis of the functionality of the settlements revealed that Buduburam is the first order settlement, followed by Nyanyano as the second order of settlement. The first order settlement have most of the essential social and economic facilities, however, the facilities are inadequate because of dense population in the area. The second order settlement also lack some basic facilities like potable water and health facilities.
Settlements along the coastal belt are highly populated. This may be due to the perceived economic viability of the fishing and the salt industries present in the area. This implies that there will be considerable pressure on social facilities in these areas hence; development programmes to be designed should be informed by this perception.The North Western part of the district which produces the district lumber and foodstuffs are fairly distributed while settlements in the middle belt have the lowest population density in the district. This is probably due to the absence of significantly viable natural resources in the area as well as the easy accessibility to the capital city-Accra.
Distribution of Services by Settlements
A critical study of the settlement systems and the spatial linkages between the settlements was carried out to assess the nature and distribution of socio-economic facilities in the district. The distribution of facilities was analyzed by employing the Scalogram technique. A scalogram is a matrix presentation of functional structure of settlements. In all, 21 settlements with population above 1000 were examined. The total number of services considered was 37. The scalogram shows that none of the settlements all the services considered. Buduburam is the only settlement found to be at level 1, having 25 functions out of the 37 considered. Afransi and Nyanyano came out as second highest with 18 functions but in terms of hierarchy, Afransi came second whilst Nyanyano had forth position.
Fetteh, having 16 services came out as hierarchy level 6. Aboso and Ekwamkrom both with 15 functions came out as hierarchy level 5 and 7 respectively. Benso and Obuasi came out as hierarchy levels 9 and 12 both with 13 functions. Surprisingly, Buduatta came out as hierarchy level 3 with eleven functions with other four (4) settlements having same functions with higher levels. Two communities, Brofoyedur and Ekroful had 10 functions with hierarchy levels 17 and 11. The rest of the communities (6) all had 8 functions with hierarchy levels ranging from 15 - 21.Most of the settlements with high hierarchy levels and functions are the ones along the Winneba – Accra trunk road, Winneba – Agona Swedru road.
This indicates that distributions of facilities are skewed towards the settlements along the main roads. A critical look at the scalogram also shows that certain key facilities such as internet, court, hospital, markets, fire station and Agric Extension etc. are lacking in the district. Also services are not distributed accordingly to settlements’ population.This analysis therefore suggests that the DA should make it a priority to provide these facilities. It also suggests that the DA’s priorities in terms of provision of socio-economic facilities should be those settlements that fell below level eight (8). These are mainly the settlements along the branch roads and internal areas.
There is a general demand for land for housing in the district. Due to the proximity of some settlements along the N1 Highway and the district to Accra, many government workers demand accommodation in the District and work in Accra because of the easy commuting. Secondly, the very existence of the Pan Africa University (private) in Pomadze which admits students from all over the country has also resulted in a high demand for housing. Estate development is therefore a potential area for investment. The district assembly could encourage private-public partnership for the construction of estate housing to ease the pressure on the demand of accommodation in the district.
Housing is one of the basic needs of life. Materials used in building have improved but the locations of some houses have always been a concern to the District Assembly. The District Assembly through the Town and Country Planning Department has embarked on educational campaign against building in unauthorized places. Notwithstanding this, buildings in Budumburam and part of Nyanyano are not properly planned. This has caused occasional flooding during the rainy season since some buildings are sited along water ways.
The district in 2000 had 54.6% of its population as females and 45.4% as males. This indicates a domination of females. Females like the males counterpart have contributed and still contribute immensely to the socio-economic and political development of the district. It is estimated that of the population of farmers, females constitute about 40%. According to the 2000 Population and Housing Census 92.6% of the economically active female population were employed as against 91.1 % of their male counterpart. In the same survey, more women household heads in the district.
This clearly indicates the leadership roles females in the district play occupy. This meant that they were deeply involved in decision making at the household level. Politically and administratively, women continue to play active roles although they are in the minority. Out of the 30 Assembly members three (3) representing ten percent are women. At the district administration, women in leadership positions constitute 15% of the senior officers. The gender distribution in leadership roles may seem skewed in favour of males, the impact of women activities in the district is tremendous and commendable.
Key gender issues
- Single parenthood among women
- High illiteracy rate among the youth
- Lack of employable skills
- Child neglect
- Teenage pregnancy
- Maltreatment and abuse of women and children
- Child labour.
Date Created : 11/17/2017 4:47:03 AM
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