Ghana ranked highest in SDGs

Participants at the stakeholders forum

Participants at the stakeholders forum

A new Afrobarometer survey has ranked Ghana highest out of 34 other African countries where government was making significant in-roads in achieving indicators under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

 

The pan-African research measures citizen’s attitudes on democracy, governance, economic conditions and other related issues on the continent.

 

Launched by the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD), in Accra on Monday, the report which assessed government’s performance in tackling the topmost problems facing citizen’s in line with realising the SDGs, scored Ghana an overall performance rate of 58 per cent.

 

It cited Ghana’s education and energy sectors as the highest-performance sectors where citizens felt government had done extensively good work in providing quality education and reliable supply of electricity as stipulated in SDG 4 and 7 respectively.

 

It found however, that successive government still lagged behind in creating jobs for the citizenry though about 66 per cent of respondents believed management of the economy had a positive outlook.

 

In the case of reducing inequalities, the research found that the country performed abysmally (37 per cent) in narrowing the gap between the poor and rich in society contrary to SDG 10.

 

Afrobarometer Fieldwork Operations Manager for West, North and East Africa, Dr Edem Selormey, presenting the report findings pointed out that unemployment topped the most pertinent issues that Africans wanted their governments to address.

 

“Unemployment is an area where governments are performing poorly followed by health, infrastructure/roads, water and sanitation, education, management of the economy and reducing poverty,” she pointed out.

 

“The remaining SDGs draw moderate levels of attention from respondents as a ‘most important priority’ though other afrobarometer data reveal that Africans also value such goals like gender equality and climate change even if they are not the first things on their minds in their struggle for daily survival,” she said.

 

Dr Selormey revealed that per the research, the highest priority areas for citizens often recorded the worst government performance citing for instance a graph which showed that while 57 per cent of respondents wanted jobs, government performance only reached 24 per cent.

 

She called for increased sensitisation on the SDG among the African populace to facilitate more “effective policy planning and strengthen public engagement.”

 

Mr George Osei-Bimpeh, the Co-Chair, Civil Society Organisations Platform on SDGs, contributing to a panel discussion on the report lamented the high pollicisation of issues in the country which disabled government from delivering quality service to the citizenry.

 

To him, “we must see the SDGs as interrelated and cutting across all sectors such that we decentralise its implementation, so we can actively monitor and participate in the processes as citizens.

 

“If citizens will rise up and hold duty bearers accountable on pertinent issues that affect their very livelihood, I think we will get authorities to improve on their act and strategies to achieve the SDGs by 2030.”

 

The Executive Director of CDD, Prof. Henry Kwasi Prempeh charged Ghanaians to “look out for the 2019 budget within the frame of the SDGs to ensure that expenditure aligned with the goals.”

By Abigail Annoh

 

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