Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has broken grounds for the commencement of infrastructural works on a 150 million US Dollars investment Project for 48 districts in six regions under the Gulf of Guinea Northern Regions Social Cohesion (SOCO) Project.
The project comes as a proactive response to the surging spillover of fragility, conflict, and violence from the Sahel to the northern border regions with the objective to improve regional collaboration and the socioeconomic and climate change resilience of border zone communities in the target northern regions of the Gulf of Guinea countries exposed to conflict and climate risks.
The project interventions will contribute to the prevention of the spread of conflict from the Sahel region, reduce vulnerability to climate change, strengthen local institutions, improve economic opportunities, build public trust, and strengthen regional dialogue across the Gulf of Guinea countries (Benin, Ivory Coast, Ghana, and Togo)
In brief remarks at the ceremony held at Yendi on Wednesday, 25th October 2023, Dr. Bawumia reiterated governments commitment to safeguarding an improved welfare of all persons in the country and more importantly people living within communities that are likely to be exposed to fragilities that threatens their sustainable socioeconomic growth and development.
“The SOCO project is a timely investment from the Government of Ghana (GoG), and it is expected to deliver socio-economic community-level climate-resilient infrastructure, skills development and training of the youth and women including the vulnerable” he stressed.
These projects, Dr. Bawumia noted, included provision of water, construction of school buildings, health facilities, construction of markets, earth dams and other critical physical infrastructure and has currently created jobs for 434 Community Facilitators (CFs) and other Specialists.
He added that the project would also improve access to basic social and economic services, promote local economic development, gender equality, and improve environmental management when the projects are executed efficiently and effectively.
“I am extremely excited to be part of this historic and symbolic sod cutting of 15 physical projects within the Yendi Municipality to pave way for the construction of all the 582 projects under the Gulf of Guinea Northern Regions Social Cohesion (SOCO) Project to enhance the resilience of our cities, communities and the country at large for sustainable development” he stated.
Dr. Bawumia emphasized that funding for the project is available and has been disbursed for the execution of all the subprojects and therefore contractors will not be inhibited with resources for project execution; citing Yendi Municipal Assembly to have received its allocation to commence work. He therefore cautioned all implementing agencies, both at the national and sub-national levels, that implementation delays will not be tolerated.
The Hon. Minister for Local Government, Decentralisation and Rural Development (MLGDRD) Mr. Daniel Botwe remarked that the SOCO project employs is a community driven approach that safeguards its sustainability and impact and provides a game changing avenue for communities to be resilient .
Thanking Government for the project and what it will deliver to the Yendi Municipality and the northern region at large, His Majesty Ndan Ya Naa Abukari Mahama II, the Overlord of Dagbon traditional area expressed delight and commended government highly for providing proactive leadership and designing a life transforming project in the country’s development efforts.