The first phase of the national consultation for a long-term national development plan for the country has been completed, Dr Nii Moi Thompson, Director-General of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) has said.
The first phase involved broad public consultations across the regions and focuses on aspirations and policies for social, economic, environmental and institutional transformation of the country and technical consultations followed by preparation of the long-term development plan, taking effect in 2018.
Dr Thompson addressing the media in Accra said the consultations involved a cross-section of participants including political party representatives, market and various associations, fishermen’s association, district officials, traditional rulers, faith-based organisations, persons with disability, student representatives and the media.
He said drawing from the directive principles of state policy, the consultations focused on national vision for the country, long-term development goals with thematic highlights on population and migration, housing, water and sanitation, public safety and personal security and civic and culture life.
Other areas include gender equality, persons with disabilities, education and training, health and nutrition, poverty and inequality, social protection, employment and decent work, the aged, youth development and sports development.
Dr Thompson explained that the long-term development plan is a series of 10 medium-term plans that would be prepared by successive governments after the current medium-term plan, Ghana Shared Goal Development Agenda II (2014-2017).
He said most of the development challenges facing the country such as infrastructure deficits and service delivery deficiencies, are structural in nature and require a long-term view, which should be far longer than the four or eight years.
Dr Thompson noted that a long-term plan accommodates both the continuity required for a long-term view of national development and the change that occurs every four years at the ballot box.
“Highlights of the national infrastructure plan include socio-economic basis, vision and strategies, energy, mobility, ICT connectivity, public and private facilities, logistics sector development, human settlements and special planning, water resources, irrigation, drainage and flood control”, he added.
He explained that financing sources for the plan include consolidated fund, municipal finance authority, district assemblies’ common fund, GETFund and Ghana Infrastructure Investment Fund.
Dr Thompson said to ensure long-term solution to financing development, it is imperative to raise the national savings rate, made up of government’s surplus or deficit, business profits and household savings and sound fiscal and monetary policies to sanitise economic management.
He added that some of the implementation challenges of the plan is frequent and unpredictable dissolution, formation, and combination of ministries which sometimes requires months if not years of organisational and budgetary realignments.
Dr Thompson said other setbacks include frequent changes in political and administrative leadership, with every new leader often doing their best to undo most of what their predecessors did and starting afresh.
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