Mr Osei Bonsu Amoah, a Deputy Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, said plans to allocate one million dollars to each constituency under the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Programme would not create conflicting roles between zonal authorities and the assemblies.
Mr Amoah, who was contributing to a panel discussion at the maiden Policy Summit in Accra, said the assemblies would assist the zonal implementing authorities in coordinating and harmonising activities to ensure successful execution of the programme.
He said over the years assemblies had been implementing projects funded by donor agencies and Central Government because they had the infrastructure and administrative machinery to execute them.
Under the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Programme (IPEP), he said government would allocate 275 million dollars to the development of basic infrastructure in 275 constituencies to embark on poverty alleviation projects.
Government would also establish three development authorities namely the Northern Development Authority, the Middle Belt Development Authority and the Coastal Development Authority to oversee the implementation of the programme.
The Policy Summit was organised by the Ministry of Information on the theme: ‘‘Building Partnerships for Growth and Jobs”.
The event provided a platform for stakeholders in the public and private sectors to dialogue on key government policies and programmes and solicit feedback from them to ensure effective implementation.
Mr Amoah noted that when agencies and government remit resources for investments at the district level, the local authorities coordinate activities to ensure those investments created jobs and wealth and yielded the needed dividends for the people.
Mr Yoofi Grant, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), commenting on the IPEP, said the programme would democratise development in the country because every district would have productive business to boost its local economy.
He said the Development Fund would create a conducive environment for jobs and wealth as well as curb rural-urban migration.
‘‘It will create avenues for expansion of the country’s economy because more jobs will be created and government’s fiscal policy will get a boost by way of getting revenues through payment of taxes,’’ he said.
The IPEP was in line with the promises made by the New Patriotic Party in the run-up to the 2016 General Election.
The programme would focus on agriculture, agribusiness and slum upgrading as well as other government flagship programmes like ‘One District, One Factory’, ‘One Village, One Dam’ and ‘One District, one Warehouse’,
Other IPEG initiatives included the expansion of health infrastructure such as Community-based Health Planning Services (CHPS) compounds to improve health delivery and small-water systems to improve provision of potable water to all parts of the country.
The event brought together captains of industries, government officials, diplomatic corps, Members of Parliament, civil society organisations and the media to brainstorm on the project.