By Prosper K. Kuorsoh, GNA
Wa, April 11, GNA – The Northern Ghana CSO Platform on Agriculture has pledged to hold government accountable in the delivery of its promises to the sector.
The CSO Platform, a brainchild of the Northern Ghana Governance Activity (NGGA) Project will aim at influencing the implementation of the famous “One village, one dam”, “One district, one factory” and “One constituency, one million dollar” as well as the “Planting for food and jobs campaign” policies by the government.
It also will be looking at the effective utilisation of other donor funding to the agriculture sector especially the 160 million Euros European Union (EU) fund which is to support agriculture development in the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) Zone Six.
At its maiden meeting in Wa, the CSO Platform also raised issues of illegal mining popularly known as ‘galamsey’ and other activities, which has negative impact on agriculture.
Mr Salifu Issifu Kanton, Executive Director of Community Development Alliance (CDA), said the CSO Platform would rely on strong advocacy to achieve its goals and objectives.
He said the CSO Platform had the responsibility of making policy work to the benefit of the people through the demand for accountability from government and other duty bearers adding that they were committed to diligently pursue such causes on behalf of the people.
Mr Kanton said people are moving out of the region because of lack of opportunities and gave the assurance that the platform would ensure that promises made were fulfilled.
Mr George Dery, ActionAid Ghana Upper West Regional Programmes Manager, said the formation of the platform came at the right time as several policies aimed at the total transformation of the agriculture sector were about to be rolled out.
He said for instance with the “One district, one factory” policy, civil society could conduct a study to identify in each district what type of factory would be suitable, sustainable and beneficial to the people and then engage government in that regard.
Mr Daniel Banuoku, a Deputy Director at the Center for Indigenous and Organizational Development (CIKOD), the Lead CSO for the Platform, expressed optimism that if CSOs demonstrated strong commitment in the implementation of such policies through demand for accountability from government, they would work to the benefit of the people.
The broad objective of the platform is to create an enabling environment for CSOs to participate in decentralisation and agriculture development.
The NGGA is a five-year initiative of United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Government of Ghana with four implementing Non- Governmental Organisations (NGOs) namely; ActionAid Ghana, SEND Ghana, West African Network for Peace-building (WANEP) and CARE International Ghana.