The Coalition of Northern Ghana CSOs (CNGC) has called on the Northern Development Authority (NDA), to as a matter of urgency prioritise climate change adaptation and mitigation activities in its on-going process of developing a Medium-Term Development Plan (MTDP) for the Authority.
The call was contained in statement issued by the Coalition and signed by the Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Coalition, Mr Bismark Adongo Ayorogo, copied to the media in Bolgatanga on Saturday.
The statement which stated that the Northern Ghana is home to a very long dry season coupled with bush burning, indiscriminate tree felling for charcoal production and endless rosewood harvesting, indicated that these negative trends, have cumulatively deepened the area’s vulnerability to the growing impacts of climate change and exacerbating poverty and hunger.
“The economy of northern Ghana which is agriculture–dependent one and impacts of climate change such as erratic rainfall pattern, floods and high temperatures have already contributed to the high levels of food insecurity in the area.
“Referencing the Ghana Statistical Service, (GSS, 2022), it stated that the regions of Upper East, North-East, Northern, Savannah and Upper West have respectively recorded73.7per cent, 65.6per cent, 41.5per cent, 58.8per cent and 61.8per cent levels of food insecurity”, it stressed.
The statement proposed to the NDA to critically consider developing a Climate Change –Responsive Planning and Budgeting with strategic actions in promoting climate-smart agriculture, Grass-for Charcoal technology, economic tree planting and growing, end bush burning, improve the quality of irrigational infrastructure, increase investment on ground water resource management and promotion of Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration (FMNR) practices.
This, the statement, indicated would not only contribute significantly to the achievements of Ghana’s Nationally Determined Contribution (Ghana-NDCs) policy actions of building resilience and promote livelihood opportunities for the youth and women in climate vulnerable Agriculture landscapes and food systems, enhancing climate resilience of women and the vulnerable, integrated water resources management, promoting sustainable charcoal production, including youth and women entrepreneurs, but would also fast-track Ghana’s efforts made at achieving the Sustainable Development Goal 13 by 2030.
The Coalition further stated that Northern Ghana was blessed with about 8 million hectares of agricultural land capable of producing to feed 50 million people and stressed that climate change was a serious threat to this potential in the area.
The Coalition further, called on the NDA to consider incorporating the Savanah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) Master Plan into its Medium-Term Development Plan stressing “SADA Master Plan wasa very comprehensive development blue-print with very strategic policy directions and actions to accelerate socio-economic transformation of northern Ghana.
The statement asked the NDA to ensure effective citizens participation especially the vulnerable and marginalised as well as socially excluded in the process to help address the challenges facing them.
The Coalition which was formed in 2015 and christened Coalition of SADA Zone CSOs is into advocacy for increased public investment in northern Ghana in the areas of agriculture and climate change. It also works to promote peace and security in the area by engaging in community sensitisation against violent extremism, radicalisation and terrorism.
FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, BOLGATANGA