The Northern Ghana Governance Activity (NGGA) Consortium, SEND GHANA, CARE International in Ghana, West Africa Network for Peace Building (WANEP) and Action Aid in collaboration with the Yendi Municipal Assembly have orgainsed a consultative forum.

With support from USAID, the consultative forum is on the District Medium Term Development Plan on Agriculture for Women groups, Community Society Organizations (CSOs), Traditional Authorities, Assembly members, Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) among others in the Yendi Municipality of the Northern Region.

Mr Richard Bekyieriya, Field officer of Northern Ghana Governance Activity indicated that the essence of the forum was to elicit views, ideas and concerns of stakeholders especially women and CSOs on priority areas of agriculture development.

He said the views and recommendations would be used to develop a collective voice for citizens on agricultural inputs into the Medium-Term Development Plans (MTDP) of the District.

He indicated that the inputs would be used to influence the preparation, process so that farmers could participate in the planning process with concrete priorities and evidence on agriculture that justifies such inputs.

According to the Field Officer, the DMTDP is considered to be an accurate document of the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies, (MMDAS) priorities for four years taking cognisance of the development needs of the District.

He announced that in reality, those plans do not reflect efficiency in District plans, budget allocation and targeted spending and could be instrumental in increasing public expenditure transparency and accountability.

He said the role of NGGA was to ensure that citizens’ views were captured in the DMTDP.

Mr Tika Seidu Abdul-Razak, the Yendi Municipal Assistant Planning Officer in his presentation stated that the vision of Ghana as contained in the Long-term National Development Plan (LTNDP, 2018 – 2021) was a “just, free and prosperous nation with high levels of national income and broad-based social development”

Mr Tika said the vision was to be accomplished through the formulation and implementation of a four-year Medium Term Development Plans (MTDP).

He indicated that the first of these plans was to be prepared based on the Medium – Term National Development Policy Framework (MTNDPF 2018 – 2021) and noted that the implementation of the consequential Medium – Term Development Plan (2018 – 2021) was the responsibility of Ministries, sector Agencies (MDAS) and the District Assemblies (DAS).

He further stated that the DMTDP would be implemented after it had been approved and certified by National Development Planning  Commission (NDPC) to ensure that it was consistent with National Development objective and priorities as required by section 18 subsection 1 of the National Development Planning  (system) Regulation 2016 (L1. 2232).

Mr Tika said MMDAS would be expected to ensure that all programmes, projects and budgets for the financial year came from their Annual Action Plan.

Mr Elvis Kyeremeh – Boateng, Assistant Municipal Coordinating Director indicated that Planting, for Food and Jobs, fertilizer subsidy, One Village One Dam and One District One Factory were to benefit the farmers adding that the forum was to help the Assembly to initiate new MTDP for 2018 – 2021 and assured them that their contributions would be captured into DMTDP of the Assembly.

Mr Abubakari Sham, Focal Person for Action on Voluntary Child Aid (AVCA) said AVCA will continue to collaborate with other organisations to create mechanisms for empowerment of stakeholders.

This he said would be through meetings with the Assembly to account to the people.

During group presentation, the participants appealed to government to make available farm inputs early to avoid late cultivation, and also appoint Agricultural Extension Officers who had completed their courses and have not yet been employed.

They also appealed for tractor services for farmers in the area.