Albert Futukpor, GNA
Salaga (N/R), Oct. 5,
GNA – Mr Ron Strikker, Netherlands Ambassador to Ghana, has encouraged
metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs) to raise more domestic
resources through property tax amongst others to support their development
He said it was time
MMDAs exploited opportunities within their jurisdictions to raise more revenue
for their own development instead of relying on central government’s support
and aid from donor partners for such purposes.
Mr Strikker gave the
encouragement when he visited the East Gonja Municipality of the Northern
Region on Thursday to monitor the impact of the Voices for Change Partnership
(V4CP) programme on the lives of residents in the area.
The V4CP highlights
issues of food and nutrition, post-harvest losses, water, sanitation and
hygiene (WASH), and clean energy to ensure that policies are developed to
address the challenges in those sectors.
Shea Network Ghana and
New Energy, both non-governmental organizations, with support from the
Netherlands Development Organization, implement the nutrition and post-harvest
losses components of the V4CP in the East Gonja Municipality.
Mr Strikker interacted
with Authorities of the East Gonja Municipal Assembly at Salaga, the Kpembe
Paramountcy, and members of Adamupe community where beneficiaries lauded the
V4CP for enlightening them on good nutrition practices and how to avoid and or
reduce post-harvest losses.
Mr Strikker said aid
was not good for the long-term, the reason V4CP was structured in a manner that
focused on investment in the various sectors to ensure sustainability.
He said the Dutch
Government’s policy was to move away from aid to trade, which was in line with
the “Ghana Beyond Aid” campaign, urging residents of the East Gonja
Municipality to exploit the huge farm land in the area to become the bread
basket of the country.
Mr Mohammed Rufai,
East Gonja Municipal Coordinating Director, said the Assembly was making
progress in the area of WASH, adding, motorbikes would be procured for its
Environmental and Health Unit to effectively monitor the sector.
Madam Getrude Yentumi,
East Gonja Municipal Director of Health Services, said for the first time,
nutrition interventions had been captured in the Assembly’s Medium Term
Development Plans, adding, efforts would continue to be made to educate
residents amidst other interventions to reduce malnutrition in the area.
Mr Robert Alagma
Akolgo, Director of the Department of Agriculture at the East Gonja
Municipality, expressed the need for the construction of access roads to farm
centres to reduce post-harvest losses as efforts were made to construct
warehouses for storage of farm produce.
Some members of
Adamupe community took turns to commend the V4CP for teaching them the kind of
foodstuffs to eat and how to prepare them to improve their nutritional status,
which had helped to improve their health conditions.