Executive Secretary of the Coalition of SADA Zone Civil Society Organisations Bismark Adongo Ayorogo has alleged that monies meant for the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam in the SADA area is being diverted by government.
He explained that the NDC mentioned in their manifesto to construct the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam and Juale in the Northern Region but monies for these projects were diverted to the construction of the Eastern Corridor road.
Bismark Adongo Ayorogo also argued that the government’s decision to leverage mobilisation of $1 billion for agricultural transformation of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone is proof of the economic potential of the area.
He also indicated that the 2016 manifesto released by the NDC failed to give details on how much public funds will be committed to the transformational agenda of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone, a move he believes is defeatist to the transformational agenda aimed at giving relief to majority of the poor and vulnerable, living in the Zone.
He was emphatic government was diverting funds meant for some prominent projects that will go a long way in bringing the transformational agenda to reality in the SADA zone.
Bismark Adongo Ayorogo narrated how in 1993 government in conjunction with the French government conducted a feasibility study on energy sources of this country and identified the Pwalugu area as a potential location that could add additional energy to the country’s sources of energy.
The project named the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam was to expand agricultural activities in the area (capacity to irrigate of 20,000 hectares of land), water transportation and provide energy, he said.
Due to inadequate funds to facilitate the project, Ghana through Parliament signed a loan agreement with the Brazil government to raise $500 million.
In 2009, the Ghana government received the money but decided to divert it into the construction of the Eastern Corridor Road.
“Government did not hide the attitude of diversion. Government actually put it in a publication dubbed ‘Top Fifty Achievements of the NDC in 2012’.
“Get hold of this publication and go to Page 6: It is stated there clearly that government diverted the money for the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam into the construction of the eastern Corridor Road and that is why we(CSOs) have an issue with that”.
He also questioned why government has failed to adequately resource SADA to execute its core mandate of addressing extreme poverty and asking SADA to liaise with the World Bank to secure a $700 million loan to facilitate projects in the Northern Ecological zone.
The suggestion by government is proof the Pwalugu multi-purpose dam project is viable, Mr Adongo stressed.
“So why will government divert the money that is meant to facilitate the project into another project?”
The Executive Secretary of the CSOs lamented all efforts to get government to address the issue of the diversion of the funds has not received any attention.
According to the CSOs, it is appropriate for government to refund the money($500,000,000 dollars) diverted and also the project is executed for the total transformation of the Northern Savannah Ecological Zone.
By Listowell Acquaye|TV3|3news.com|Ghana