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Regional News of Monday, 19 December 2005

Source: GNA

Ghanaians have a role to realize budgetary targets

Wa, Dec. 19, GNA - Mr Baba Hamid Osman Principal Economic Planning Officer of the Upper West Regional Coordinating Council, has stressed the need for Ghanaians to support and work hard to achieve the targets set out in the 2006 National Budget Statement. He said the budget statement was only a working document and would not achieve the desired objectives without the people working together for its realization.

Mr Osman, made the call at a day's forum on the 2006 Budget organized by the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) and the Centre for Budget Advocacy, an NGO at Wa.

The forum was to explain the Budget especially its technical aspects to the public to enable them know how it affects them and the role expected of them to realize its objectives.

Mr Osman said no effective poverty reduction strategy could take place in the northern parts of the country without addressing problems in the agricultural sector, as farming was the main occupation of the people.

He identified education, health, road, and transport sectors as critical to the development and prosperity of the north as the three regions, northern, upper east and west regions had been recognized as having the highest levels of poverty in the country of between 69 to 88 per cent.

Mr Osman appealed to the Government to put in place plans to put into action the President's Special Initiative (PSI) on cotton, rice, guinea corn, and guinea fowl in the north.

Mr Edmund Bayir, a Budget analyst said for the country to improve on its Gross Domestic Product (GDP), there should be sustained growth in the three key sectors of agriculture, industry and service as poor performance in one sector affected the GDP.

Madam Elizabeth Awuni, Statistics Officer of the NGO, commended the Government for incorporating into the budget, contributions by individuals and organizations.