The acting Finance Officer of the Centre for Development Partnerships (CDP) of the World Bank, Ms Akyaah Dapaah has called for collaborated efforts to sensitise the public about the effective management of the oil and gas discovery.
She said that the CDP/World Bank has set up a civil society fund that focuses on civil engagements for the empowerment of marginalised and vulnerable groups to enable the citizens to have greater say in the ownership of the development process to promote equity.
Ms Dapaah made the call at a sensitisation workshop for community opinion leaders, youth groups, the business community and members of the Jomoro District Assembly at Half Assini in the Western Region.
The day’s workshop was organised by CDP/World Bank in collaboration with Afro Global Alliance, a non-governmental organisation was on the theme: “Ghana extracting industry: creating platform for transparency and accountability of natural resource use.”
It brought together chiefs, youth groups, students and opinion leaders and representatives of the District Assemblies and heads of department.
Ms Dapaah said last year, CDP awarded funds ranging from 8,000 Ghana cedis to 15,000 Ghana cedis to six local civil organisations under its civil fund grant to empower the people in their socio-economic development efforts.
Mr Nyanyi Kablan-Victor, Jomoro District Chief Executive commended the organisers for the workshop, since the area is the host of the oil discovery and gas find.
He said it would facilitate the process of probity, transparency and accountability.
Mr Kablan-Victor said oil was a precious resource which generates mix feelings among Ghanaians amidst the challenges and opportunities, hence the need to maximize the profits.
Mr Imoro Abudu, Programme Manager of Afro Global Alliance gave an overview of the challenges inherent in the oil and gas discovery and the major lessons to be learnt from other countries.
He urged government to formulate pragmatic policies that would go a long way in satisfying the goals of the people to avoid the armed insurgency in the Niger Delta and Cabinda.
Awulae Annor Adjei, Paramount Chief of the Jomoro Traditional Area advised the government to take appropriate steps to let the people in the area benefit from the oil and gas discoveries.
Mr Vitus Azeem, Executive Officer of Integrity Initiative exposed the participants to the value of probity, transparency and accountability in the oil and gas discovery.