A Christian Health, Development and Relief organization dedicated to the promotion of total health for people living in poor urban and rural communities in Ghana and Africa, Sustainable Mission Aid (SMAid) International, has held a project start-up meeting with stakeholders and beneficiary districts of its Improving Local Governance and Accountability Mechanisms Project (ILGAM) in Kenyasi in the Asutifi North District of the Brong Ahafo Region.
The Improving Local Government Accountability Mechanisms (ILGAM) Project is a one-year project on improving social accountability at the grassroots and sponsored by Star-Ghana with support from UKAid, DANIDA and the European Union (EU).
The beneficiary districts are Asutifi North, Sunyani West and Asunafo South in the Brong Ahafo Region who signed a Memorandum of Understanding with SMAid to ensure the project achieves its aim.
Delivering a presentation on the ILGAM project, the Project Coordinator of SMAid, Mr. Gilbert Asante, explained that the goal of the project is to empower citizens’ oversight responsibility of the capital and resources invested on development projects in their communities as a way to enhance and improve local governance, transparency, accountability and quality job performance.
He said the project will work with two key outcomes to enhance accountability of district and community-based capital projects through Civil Society Organizations (CSOs)/Community Based Organizations (CBOs) led campaigns, and improve capacities of CSOs, CBOs and citizens to monitor district assembly capital development projects.
“We are committed to providing the knowledge and means for individuals to have access to health, livelihood opportunities, quality education and related matters for a holistic and sustainable development among the world’s under-served persons”, he emphasized.
Mr. Asante therefore tasked participants to share experiences and put the knowledge acquired from the engagement to better the living standard of their communities.
He said the use of social media and modern communication channels was efficient and cost effective, and appealed to advocates of transparency and accountability to adopt it in campaign approach.
The District Chief Executive in a speech read on his behalf by the District Coordinating Director, George Padmore Mensah, commended SMAid for the initiative and pledged the Assembly’s readiness to ensure the project succeeds.
He said the assembly organizes town hall meetings to afford stakeholders the opportunity to demand for accountability from duty bearers, and therefore sees the initiative as an important and timely intervention.
The DCE therefore appealed to development partners and donor agencies to come to the aid of the assembly to enable it execute its development agenda.