DEVELOPMENT PLANNING, PROGRAMMING AND BUDGETING
As a prelude to the formulation of the new Medium Term Development Plan (2010 – 2013), a review of the old plan was carried out to ensure that programs developed would be pro poor. In line with this a Team was formed in the District Assembly to carry out the exercise. The Team carried out dialogue with District and community stakeholders to solicit views on their specific problems, needs and coping mechanisms.
In coming out with the Development Programs of the District in the MTDP therefore, serious consideration was given to the programs identified during the poverty mapping exercise. This we hope would give meaning to the MTDPF development strategy which is the framework within which the MTDP is being prepared.
Using the Urban/Area Councils as a basis for the pro poor programming, the 3 Area and 1 Urban Councils were ranked according to their poverty status. The studies showed the following ranking of Sub Districts:
- Weta – most poverty stricken
- Afife – 2nd most poverty stricken
- Penyi – 3rd poverty stricken
- Dzodze 4th poverty stricken
Also the District plan has been formulated for projects whose implementation will culminate in the realization of the Districts overall goal for the Medium Term (2010-2013) Development Plan – To improve the living standard of the people in the District by facilitating effective sustained growth and poverty reduction through effective resource mobilization and management.
The development programmes and projects have been phased out year by year within the four year period. These projects are translated into an Annual Plan which specifies what action is to be undertaken, where, by whom, at what time and cost.
The four year Medium Term Development Plan contains projects which are organized under seven main thematic areas as identified under the MTDPF.
Conduct of Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA)
The Medium Term Development Strategic Policy Framework acknowledges the causal link, which exists between the state of the environment and Poverty and makes reference to the need for Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) in order to ensure that economic growth arising from the Medium Term Development Strategic Policy Framework is sustainable.
To make the programmes sustainable, the District decided to carry out an environmental assessment of all programmes and activities in the DMTDP. This is being tackled by using the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) as a tool to assess the sustainability of Projects/programmes outlined in the MTDP. An attempt has been made to come up with strategies and activities to mitigate some of the negative impacts that will result from the implementation of the projects/programs formulated.
Key Areas of concern for Poverty Reduction
The key areas identified for poverty which were used for the appraisal are: A) Effects on natural resources. B) Effects on social and cultural conditions and C) Effects on the economy
Performance of Individual Projects/programmes
(A) Effects of projects/programmes on natural resources
From the sustainability test, it can be seen that the implementation of the plan will have a very great positive impact on the natural resources and environment. For instance, programmes to A) Sensitize farming communities on the use of environmentally, friendly technologies and practices, B) Form a taskforce to enforce existing environmental bye-laws and regulations, C) Establishment of woodlot in the District and D) Engaging the youths in tree planting all geared towards ensuring the protection of forest and wildlife, hence protecting natural resources.
However, programme to improve health delivery system in the District involves construction of health infrastructures. Also, increasing school enrolment implies construction of more educational infrastructures. Clearing of the land for construction will affect the habitats of some animals and the environment as well. Likewise, desiltation and construction of dams and dugout to help increase agric production could become breeding grounds for mosquitoes. Malaria is one of the top ten diseases in the district. The proliferation of dams could further worsen the malaria situation in the district.
Also, construction of new dams would involve a lot of clearing which will result in deforestation of the area. This will result in the early siltation of the dam after its construction.
(B) Effects of projects/programmes on social and cultural conditions
Some of the programme to increase the output of the agricultural sector will have a great positive impact on the social and cultural life of the people. This is because more jobs will be created for the people in the district since majority of them are into agriculture production. It will also improve access to land for farming activities thereby improving the livelihoods of the people in the district.
Improving the road conditions in the district through rehabilitation will have positive effect on the social and economic life of the people. This is because; it will facilitate cohesion of local communities and also promote an effective link and accessibility to social facilities which will improve their well being and health.
Again, programme to organize training workshop for the youths in ICT and dressmaking will help create employment to the people in the District. Also, programme formulated under Expanded Development of Productive Infrastructure such as provision of boreholes, electricity and sanitary facilities would enhance citizen’s access to social services and hence there will be an improvement in the social and cultural life of the people.
However, in trying to improve and sustain the micro-economic stability of the district, existing markets will be rehabilitated and more sheds provided in some of the communities. This will bring about sanitation problems to the people if measures are not put in place to control the waste that will be generated by the traders in the market. Also, the intervention has no provision for protection against fire. This could have serious implications for market users. Additionally, improvement of feeder roads in the district will leads to sand winning and removal of top soil.
(C) Effects of projects/programmes on the economy
Agricultural productivity brings immense contribution to the growth of the local economy through the provision of jobs, higher income and improve standard of living. Increasing agricultural produce correspondingly result in abundance raw material for local industrial use. The programme will bring about the growth of small scale industries.
Also, improving health delivery system in the district has a positive effect on the economic lives of the people. Enhance health care will consequently lead to increased ability for productive activities which will bring about development. The construction of health facilities in some of the communities will make use of the local materials and labour which will create jobs for the people and consequently improving upon their economic lives.
However, the appraisal shows that none of the activities seems to have negative impact on the economy of the district.
Measures planned to improve performance
In order to overcome some of the negative effects identified during the appraisal, efforts will be made to collaborate with the relevant agencies and departments to plan strategies to confront them. For example, the Fire Service would be contacted to advice on fire prevention and protection in the markets that are being rehabilitated. Serious collaboration would also be forged with other relevant departments like MOFA, Forestry Commission and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
It has also been realized that activities such as the rehabilitation or construction of small dams must necessarily be carried out in view of its role in increasing food production. Measures would however be put in place to embark on serious sensitization campaign to encourage the use of chemically treated mosquito nets in the catchment area of the dams.
As a guarantee against the depletion of the topsoil and vegetative cover by contractors who undertake construction of roads, it has been decided to make it mandatory for them to replant trees/grass along the road and also refill borrow pits used for winning gravel. This will be included in every bidding document
For the rehabilitation of major Market centers and provision of markets sheds, 6 refuse containers are proposed to be positioned in each market centre. The market centers will also be supplied with electricity to avoid indiscriminate dumping of refuse especially in the night.
For the construction of health and educational infrastructures, it has been decided that contractors embarked on construction of erosion checks and planting of trees and grasses
The Way Forward
As an overall strategy, all the activities in the current MTDP have been subjected to Strategic Environmental Assessment. The exercise revealed that the District has attached much importance to the negative impacts that the Project may have on the environment and made recommendations to that effect. There is therefore the need for this to be replicated and consultations to agencies like Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Forestry Commission (CF) be put at top priority in future plan preparations.
Proposals for Introducing and Monitoring Local Poverty Indicators
During the data collection stage of the DMTDP, some local Poverty Indicators such as income levels, levels of education, access to health care, education, water and sanitation facilities etc, were collected and analysed. What is needed at this stage is continuous Monitoring of the Poverty Indicators in the District. Attention should therefore be given by the NDPC, RCC and other stakeholders in the Monitoring of the Indicators. Formats would be designed to enable the relevant agencies and departments compile monitoring reports of these indicators.
Further Improvements to Projects, Programmes and Budgets
To ensure that these Projects who’s Implementation could have negative impact on the environment do not pose any environmental threat to the MTDP, these project have been isolated and specific recommendations made to that effect.
New Economic Activities/opportunities to Promote Growth and Reduce Poverty
New economic activities to promote growth and reduce poverty include the following: bee keeping, mushroom farming, snail rearing and cassava processing into cassava flour. The presence of National Board for Small Scale Industries in the District would provide the Technical support.
Ways of Engaging Local People and Communities in Future Sustainability Appraisals
This can best be achieved through the integration of Environmental Impact Assessment into questionnaires to be administered to collect baseline data. This will assist the DPCU to have first hand information on how the project will have negative impact on the environment and find solution to those problems in order to make them environmentally sustainable.
Medium Term Development Plan: 2010-2013
This section includes projects and programmes to be implemented in the medium term (2010-2013), under the seven main thematic areas of the MTDPF – improvement and sustenance of micro economic stability, accelerated agric modernization and industrial development, sustainable partnership between government and private sector, developing human resources for national development, expanded development of productive infrastructure, transparent and accountable governance and reducing poverty and income inequalities. Identification and selection of projects and programmes in the four year medium term plan considered the following factors:
- Projects that directly serves the need of poor groups and address gender concerns;
- Projects with high returns to resource inputs;
- Projects that serve as a spring board to the successful implementation of projects in the long term;
- Projects that have verifiable funding sources;
- Projects that promote efficient mobilization of natural, human, financial, institutional and infrastructural resources for development in the District;
- Projects that promote human resource development and good governance.
The tables below show the medium term projects identified in the District. In this table, information provided are type of project, location of project, time frame, Indicators, Indicative cost of project, sources of funding for the projects and Implementing agencies
Refer to pdf file attached for tables