The Western Regional Minister, Mr Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, has encouraged district assemblies to be creative and resilient to turn challenges into opportunities to generate more revenue and resources for the development of their areas.
Drawing inspiration from the COVID-19 era, he noted, assemblies in the region performed very well generally in revenue mobilisation and particularly in the agriculture sector.
Launching the regional budget hearing on Thursday, Mr Darko-Mensah stressed “I believe that the Metropolitan, Municipal and Districts Assemblies (MMDAs) in the Western Region are capable of keeping to their revenue targets and even doing better than what we are going to achieve this year.”
The event, held at Sekondi, enabled the Regional Coordinating Council (RCC) and the national technical team, to review MMDA’s revenue and expenditure performance and targets for the 2022- 2025 fiscal year.
It will also pay critical attention to adherence to government’s policies and strategies and linkage to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Mr Darko-Mensah said “The Western Regional Coordinating Council will be introducing the ‘e- tankasspot fine’ to give district assemblies the opportunity to reduce their sanitation budget and force people caught with unsanitary conditions and also make the western Region the number one tourism destination in Ghana.
He added“I urge you to rally private sector investors to take advantage of many opportunities in your various jurisdiction to invest in the local economy in districts and municipalities because we believe investing in local economic development is the only way to go to sustainably generate more revenues for your assemblies.”
The RCC investment centre, he said, had made special arrangements with Takoradi Technical University (TTU) to support assemblies to develop business plans for major projects or products in their areas.
This effort, MrDarko-Mensah believed, would not only reduce unemployment challenges, but, also improve their revenue generation.
Mr Darko-Mensah added “It is very important to put much focus on your revenue mobilisation efforts. The Internal Generated Fund(IGF) is your own money, that is for you, and you control it. I believe that what you control is where you have to put in a lot of efforts.”
The RCC, he stressed, believed MMDAs must ensure their challenges, budgets and expenditure must be related.
FROM CLEMENT ADZEI BOYE, SEKONDI