Gov't Urged To Commit Resources To SADA - NORPRA
The Northern Patriots in Research and Advocacy (NORPRA), a Civil Society Organization, has appealed to Government to commit adequate resources for the implementation of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA). Whilst commending government for initiating the implementation process by passing the SADA bill and the inauguration of its Board, it called on Government to provide adequate funding and to fast-track it’s smooth implementation. This was contained in a petition signed by Mr Bismak Ayorogo Adongo, President of NORPRA, through the Regional Minister to President John Atta Mills at the weekend. “Whilst we commend government for initiating the implementation of SADA, we are totally dissatisfied with government’s unwillingness to allocate substantial amount of state resources to this pro-poor SADA. Our dissatisfaction stems from the fact that the Ghanaian economy is now resilient, sound, vibrant, strong and better than before due to your prudent economic management,” the petition stated. It said the National Democratic Congress (NDC) entered into a social contract with the people of the three northern regions and Ghana for that matter through its manifesto in 2008 that it would immediately take urgent steps to set up SADA with initial start up capital of “200 million Ghana cedis”. It also noted that the Party in its manifesto promised to make annual contribution of 100 million Ghana cedis to SADA for a 20-year period and to also lead a Donor Conference on Northern Ghana with the aim of raising an additional 200 million dollars from Ghana‘s Development Partners and the Private Sector in order to ensure that SADA got a firm and solid financial foundation. The petition stated that Government had failed to honour its promise of providing 200 million cedis as seed capital and the 100 million cedis annually. It has not also held the Donor Conference as promised in its manifesto in 2008. According to the petition government only provided 25 million Ghana cedis in 2010 and another 25 Million Ghana cedis in 2011 as its seed capital instead of the 200 million Ghana cedis seed capital. It therefore appealed to President Mills to as matter of urgency allocate the 200 million Ghana cedis to SADA with retrospective effect from 2009 and to also speed up the rest of the contributions on promised the people towards the implementation of SADA especially those which had not yet been tackled at all. Mr Mark Woyongo, Upper East Regional Minister, indicated that government was committed to the implementation of SADA and explained that the passage of the bill and the inauguration of the SADA Board was a clear indication of the commitment. He indicated that plans were far advanced to organize the Donor Conference to secure more funding for SADA adding that there were many pro-poor interventional policies and programmes including the Rural Electrification Project and provision of potable water all aimed at reducing poverty and bridging the gap between the north and the south.