The Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) has cautioned political parties in the country to desist from using SADA as a political football.
According to SADA, they have launched programmes geared towards addressing structural issues that impede the transformation of the SADA Zone.
This was in a response to a press conference organised by a group in Wa “The Truth Forum” alleging that “SADA is a Legacy of Shame”.
‘SADA is focused on its mandate and will like to appeal to all political parties and individuals in Ghana to desist from using SADA as a political football,’ Paul Twum-Barimah
Development Communications Coordinator, SADA said in a rejoinder.
Read details of the rejoinder from SADA:
REJOINDER- ”SADA A LEGACY OF SHAME”
It has been brought to the attention of The Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) that a Group called “The Truth Forum” held a Press Conference in Wa indicating, “SADA is a Legacy of Shame”. We have been reluctant to respond to it because we do not want the Institution to be dragged into partisan politics.
Setting the records straight, the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) was established by an Act of Parliament (Act 805, 2010) as an independent and autonomous statutory Institution to “provide a framework for the comprehensive and long-term development of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone (NSEZ)”.
Act 805,2010 captures these ambitions and tasks into 3 strategic objectives for SADA.
i. Provide strategic vision and planning to government, consistent with the national plan, but one, which will ensure accelerated, integrated and comprehensive development of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone, in consultation with stakeholders.
ii. Mobilize human, financial and other resources for the implementation of the accelerated development strategy.
iii. Co-ordinate existing and future development and related policies affecting the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone with a view to ensuring coherence in policy- making and implementation.
SADA is committed to this mandate and will continue to pursue its work based on this core mandate.
It is true that the institution initially may have run into some problems. It has repositioned and strengthened itself to transform the zone. The issues being reported by the “Truth Forum” at Wa in the Upper West region are old issues, which were raised in the 2013 Auditor General’s Report and are therefore not new to the public.
In response to the 2013 Auditor General’s report, a new Board was reconstituted and a new CEO appointed by H.E the President of the Republic of Ghana in mid-2014.
The new Board on assumption of duty took each recommendation in the Auditor Generals’ 2013 Report and has since addressed most of the issues in moving forward; some of which were also discussed at the Public Accounts Committee. For example, a payment plan was reached with Azongtaba Cottage Industry to buy back our shares in the Guinea Fowl project.
Some payments have already been made by Azongtaba Cottage Industry to SADA according to this payment plan. It is therefore important to note that there are a lot of inaccuracies in the Press release by the “Truth Forum”.
SADA is a much stronger and credible organization than before and has re-engaged with its constituency. Over the past two years, we have regained recognition by our Development Partners, our local Constituency and other state and non-state institutions in Ghana and abroad.
In January 2016, we launched a long-term visioning process to transform the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone and diverse consultations and inputs are underway. This Master Plan will have ancillary sectoral plans to guide the transformation process of the Zone.
This is to position the Zone for increased private sector investments to unlock the huge untapped potentials of the Zone and trigger its transformation.
We have also launched the first ever Agriculture Investments Guide for the SADA Zone.
This guide provides soil suitability analysis for several types of crops as a guide to investors to help them make informed decisions for investments in the agriculture sector. The guide has triggered a lot of interest already in the Zone by both Ghanaian and International Investors.
We recently launched an International Agriculture Workshop in La Palm Beach Hotel with support from the World Bank at the instance of H.E the President to find lasting solutions to unlock the huge potential for commercial agriculture to take off; many investors have started moving into the zone to explore the area for investments.
All these initiatives are geared towards addressing the structural issues that impede the transformation of the SADA Zone.
SADA is focused on its mandate and will like to appeal to all political parties and individuals in Ghana to desist from using SADA as a political football.
Kindly engage our website on www.sadagh.org for further information regarding our work.
Development Communications Coordinator, SADA