The Minister of Environment, Science Technology and Innovation, Dr Kwaku Afriyie has inaugurated a mini industrial Gari processing centre at Sori Number “One” in the West Gonja District of the Savannah Region.
The inauguration forms part of field visits of Dr. Afriyie to Sustainable Land and Water Management Project (SLWMP) sites in some beneficiary communities in the Northern sector of the country.
GBC’s Emmanuel Mensah-Abludo who was on tour with the Minister reports that the SLWMP is being funded by Global Environmental Facility (GEF) under the auspices of the World Bank.
The women in Sori Number “one” community were very excited about the gari processing facility.
A representative of the group, Madam Fatima Seidu was thankful to those who provided funding for the facility saying it will help them to make some money to support their families.
Dr Kwaku Afriyie talked about the collaborative role his Ministry is playing in the implementation of the Sustainable Land and Water Management Project (SLWMP) and the necessity to upscale monitoring at the community level for replication.
According to him, the Environment Ministry has become a sort of lightning rod to galvanize all the other sectors that input into the SLMWP.
Dr Afriyie told the people: “Today I am here, I will be monitoring this project to see how you will make use of it because I have seen a lot of projects, the communities inaugurate them with a funfair and don’t make use of it.”
“I hope this one is going to be different so that we can replicate this one elsewhere,” he observed.
Dr Afriyie intimated that simple application of scientific knowledge is what is needed to improve a lot of the people in their localities.
“The bric-a-brac, the small, small things that will make our life very easy is what your minister [Dr Afriyie] is interested in and we have to make sure we apply them and make them work.”
The Chief Sori Number One, Naa Dizooya Gberika complained about the menace of the Fulani herdsmen in the area and appealed to Dr Afriyie help stop the nuisance.
Dr Kwaku Afriyie also paid a courtesy call on the Savannah Regional Minister, Saeed Muhazu Jibrill and continued to the Daffiama-Bussie-Issa District of the Upper West Region where he commissioned a drying platform at Legriyiri and a dugout at Selle to wrap up his day.
Speaking at Legriyiri, the District Chief Executive (DCE) for Daffiama-Bussie-Issa (DBI), Nadi Imoro Sanda observed that amongst all the interventions of Sustainable Land and Water Management Project, the one that is dear to the hearts of the people of the Daffiama-Bussie-Issa District is the dugout and appealed to the sector Minister, saying, “in the near future, if you are going to construct dams, you should consider Wogu as one of the beneficiaries”.
The DCE indicated that in terms of infrastructure for processing and post-harvest management, a gari processing facility is under construction at Jolenyiri to promote agribusiness development and alternative livelihood for the community and it will also go a long way to improve income generation for the community members.
Some personalities on tour with Dr Afriyie were the Project Coordinator for SLWMP, I.C. Acquah; the Focal Person for Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) on the SLWMP in Ghana, Kingsley Amoako; and the Chief Director of Ministry of Environment, Science Technology and Innovation (MESTI), Madam Cynthia Asare Bediako.
Story filed by Emmanuel Mensah-Abludo.