The Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has held a community durbar at Buipe in the Central Gonja District of the Northern Region to educate citizens on the planning and budgeting process of the assembly.

The durbar formed part of CDD-Ghana’s project dubbed, “Promoting social accountability through citizens participation in local governance” and it is being implemented in 20 selected Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) across the country.

The project, which is in collaboration with Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), was as result of various research findings such as the 2014 Afrobarometer Ghana Survey and the 2015 Open Budget Index, which pointed to the lack of engagements and consultation with citizens in the design and implementation of MMDAs’ programmes such as budgets and plans.

The Buipe durbar brought together officials from the district assembly and stakeholders in the district including traditional authorities amongst other interest groups, where presentations were made to educate citizens to understand the planning and budgeting system of MMDAs.

Mr Amos Seidu, Executive Director of Center for Rural Improvement Services, a local partner of CDD-Ghana, who spoke during the durbar at Buipe, said it also sought to build coalitions among local citizen groups and the media to enhance transparency, participation and feedback around local government budgeting and planning system.

Ewuriche Barichisu Mankir, a Queenmother in the Buipe area, lauded the initiative saying it enlightened the people on the budgeting and planning process of the assembly, which the citizens would use to demand accountability from duty bearers.

She said there is the need for peace in the area to promote accelerated development.

Mr Mahama Mustapha, District Chief Executive of Central Gonja District, thanked CDD-Ghana and partners for the initiative saying it would encourage local people to participate in the activities of the assembly.

Meanwhile, CDD-Ghana and its local partners will hold similar durbars in four other communities in the district to enhance effective citizens’ participation in the local governance system.

Source: GNA/NewsGhana.com.gh