48 MMDAs to benefit from SOCO project

A total of 48 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) in the Northern part of the country are to benefit from the Gulf of Guinea Northern Social Cohesion (SOCO) project, aimed at preventing the spread of conflict from the Sahel into to the area.

The beneficiary MMDAs which are in the Northern, North East, Upper East, Upper West, Savannah and Oti regions, are expected to benefit from the five-year project, which would among other issues, reduce vulnerability to climate change, strengthen local institutions, economic opportunities, and public trust.

The project is funded by the Word Bank and being implemented by the Ministry of Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD), Ministry of Finance, National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), Ministry of Youth and Sports and Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection.

Speaking at a workshop in Accra yesterday, to fashion out the appropriate strategies to coordinate the development interventions of the project, the Chief Director of MLGDRD, Mr Amin Abdul-Rahaman, said following the successful launch of the project in Bolgatanga in November 2022, the Ministry had worked tirelessly to initiate the project in various beneficiary communities.

“Indeed, the Ministry, as the policy holder and lead implementing agency appreciates the opportunity the SOCO project presents for a more coordinated and integrated approach towards promoting development in the northern part and Oti Region. These interventions will be related to local economic development, digital innovations, local governance, social cohesion, climate resilience, promoting social accountability, conflict and violence among others,” he said.

Mr Abdul-Rahaman added that,  the SOCO project implementation at the national level had continuously identified and engaged development partners, and other organisations to learn more about their programmes and projects being executed in the Northern part of Ghana.

The Board Chair of the Northern Development Authority (NDA),Dr Sulemana Abdulai, said the NDA had developed medium term strategies with Civil Society Organisations, to deal with peace and security, emergency preparedness and social cohesion in the North.

He said although the SOCO project resonates with the development strategies of the Authority, stringent collaboration with stakeholders would help curb the threat to peace and security from neighbouring countries, not limited to Togo and Burkina Faso.

Dr Abdulai said the current threat from these neighbouring countries were real, and called for the need to collaborate with relevant stakeholders to ensure peaceful atmosphere in the region.


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