By: Fred Yaw Sarpong
The Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) has raised concern about little development that has gone on in the irrigation sector across the country.
“We have seen some dams in the country but they are not enough,” the Chairman of the committee Professor Paul Kingsley Boah-Bassuah told the Daily Express.
The committee visited some irrigation dams at Jirapa in the Upper West region and others dams across the country to ascertain whether petroleum funds which were allocated to rehabilitate some irrigation dams have been used for that.
“We realized much has not been done. For instance, in 2015 PIAC report, an amount more than GHc15,000 was allocated to rehabilitate some dams in Upper West region. Upon our visit we did not see much works here. The committee is not convinced on level of work done,” he stated.
He said that the committee will intensify it monitoring role to ensure that petroleum revenues are utilize for it purposes.
He indicated that the areas where the dams supposed to benefit are the potential farmers in the areas and to this end government should take the construction of such dams seriously so that farmers can depend on the dams for all year farming.
According to the PIAC 2015 report, approximately 67% (GHc39.95 million) of the total allocation to the agriculture modernization priority area was expended on goods and services as against approximately 33% (GHc19.60 million) going into capital expenditure.
It stated that approximately 74% (GHc29.75 million) of the Annual Budget Funding Amount (ABFA) allocations that went into the payment/procurement of goods and services was disbursed as counterpart funding for the 2nd Compact of the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA) whiles the remaining 26% (GHc10.2 million) was used to cover part of an outstanding bill under National Fertilizer Subsidy Programme.
The report mentioned that approximately 96% (GHc18.80 million) of the capital expenditure incurred in the agriculture sector and funded by the ABFA went into the construction and/or rehabilitation of irrigation dams in Northern Ghana with the remaining 4% (GHc0.799 million) paying for infrastructure in the Fisheries and Aquaculture sub-sector.