It is universally accepted that the provision of public services and facilities in various communities has a significant impact on quality of life that residents and others enjoy.
Good quality amenities, including schools, health care centres and other community facilities such as markets are among key social infrastructures of sustainable development.
The investment in social infrastructure, therefore, is essential for maintaining quality of life and for the development of strong communities.
It is in this vein, that governments, over the years, at the local level across the country have undertaken social infrastructure projects such as schools, hospitals, markets and community centres, as a means of developing the local economies of the communities.
One would have thought that in fulfilling this developmental role, local government authorities would consult the local people to identify their needs and initiate projects that would meet their needs in a sustainable manner.
Without doubt, the complementary role between the local government and the community lie at the heart of the entire development process.
However, in the case of the Central Region, it was reported that lack of consultation to determine the actual needs of some communities has rendered projects undertaken useless.
According to the report, 56 out of the 862 completed projects in the region are not in use, due to the failure of the district assemblies to conduct proper needs assessment in those areas.
Consequently, the report said, markets situated at Biriwa in the Abura-Asebu Kwamankese District, Benin in Asikuma-Odoben-Brakwa, and Ankamu in the Gomoa West District, among others have all become white elephants.
The Times finds it rather disturbing that local authorities ignored the basic role of identifying, formulating and implementing the developmental projects at that level to meet the needs of the members of the various communities.
Consequently, the projects have become white elephants and remain useless because members of the community were not consulted before the implementation of the projects.
We are convinced that the local authorities might have undertaken the projects with good intentions, but as it turns out, they are misplaced.
It is scandalous that the projects cannot be put to any use and, therefore, a waste. Public funds have gone down the drain and that is unfortunate.
We call for immediate investigation into this bizarre development and urge government to sanction officials responsible for implementing wasteful projects.
This must be done to forestall future occurrences.