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General News of Thursday, 3 August 2017

Source: GNA

Stakeholder engagement platform launched for railway development

Mr Kwaku Agyenim-Boateng, the Deputy Minister for the Ministry of Railway Development, has launched a stakeholder engagement to solicit views on the best ways to implement the Ghana Railway Development Master Plan, completed in 2013.

The programme, which was in collaboration with the Ministry of Information, would ensure the full participation of both institutional and community stakeholders in the projects, would be completed in six phases.

At a stakeholders’ consultative workshop, in Accra, on Thursday, Mr Agyenim-Boateng, said if the Master plan was implemented, it would create more job opportunities for the communities along the various railway terminals, and hence help in cutting down unemployment.

For his part, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, a Deputy Minister of Information, said the Government had adopted the strategy of involving relevant stakeholders in key projects such as railway development.

Mr Oppong Nkrumah said this was important to provide the citizenry with a better understanding of the projects implemented so they could own them for the maximum benefits of their communities.

He said the Ministry of Information had thus launched a number of engagement platforms to make sure that the citizenry were keenly involved in all projects because they were for their benefit and ownership.

He cited launched of the National Policy Summit, where key Ministers engaged stakeholders in developing policies, sharing information and fine-tuning policies for citizen ownership, as one of such successful platforms.

“We recently launched the Town Hall Meeting, where we brought together the 216 Districts to hold town hall meeting to engage with the people of Ghana, get feedback on some of the programmes and policies of government and also give them status update of what we are doing,” he said.

Mr Oppong Nkrumah said the Ministry had also introduced stakeholder engagement meetings for specific Ministries, Departments, Agencies, and specific projects, saying, without such proactive platforms, the projects might end up becoming a burden and useless to the citizenry.

He said the Ministry of Information was working together with the Ministry of Railway Development in the implementation of the 84-kilometre Railway from Tema to Akosombo.

The project is scheduled to start in October, this year, Mr Richard Dombo, the Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Railway Development Authority, said.