The Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) is set to launch an improved Rural Housing Programme for the whole of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone (NSEZ) in February.
The initiative is aimed at promoting the development of a structured and robust housing scheme for the area as a way of mitigating major challenges such as structural failure facing the traditional houses with the onset of heavy and sustained rains.
Mr. Salifu Mahama, Consultant to the Project who spoke on behalf of the SADA Chief Executive Officer at a one day sensitization workshop in Wa, said SADA came in big last year in the area of agriculture but had also identified housing as an essential need of the people across its operational areas.
He said it was in the light of this that SADA was partnering with the private sector to rehabilitate and improve damaged housing infrastructure to withstand natural disasters such as floods.
In this regard, SADA intends to partner with Hydra forms Technology to put one structure in each of the regions to serve as models that would mould about 1,500 blocks per day for the project and other ventures.
Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs), Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies, civil society and NGOs and the private sector are the collaborating bodies expected to fund and coordinate sustainable development initiatives through grants and loans.
Mr. Mahama said the programme is designed to support local capacity development in construction.
It would also create development opportunities for the poor, adding that a total of 1,000 jobs and 50 youth enterprises comprising 10 partners in each would be created under the new SADA Housing Programme.
He mentioned post disaster housing and development initiative, sustaining improved housing and shelter development, upgrading technical skills of local artisans, support access to business development services and facilitating access to financial services for housing schemes as some of the key components of the programme.
Mr. Mahama said the programme was targeted at all the 60 districts within the SADA Zone with communities and individuals being the beneficiaries.
He said the expected outcome would be to increase employment in rural economies as well as integrate them into the mainstream.
Mr. J. B. Atugba, the Chief Director at the Upper West Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) who represented Caretaker Regional Minister, Alhaji Amidu Sulemana, lauded SADA for the programme but stressed on the issue of implementation.
He said brilliant ideas usually emanate from workshops such as this but those ideas were often left stranded on tables and shelves each time it got to implementation.
Mr. Atugba called on all key stakeholders concerned with the implementation of the programme to be proactive to make the programme a success.