News Desk Report
The Ministry of Finance (MoF) has approved the commencement of the full implementation of the $1 million per constituency pledge under the Infrastructure for Poverty Eradication Programme (IPEP), for the 2020 fiscal year.
The Ministry therefore granted letters of commencement to the three development authorities to carry out the implementation of the policy.
The commencement certificate makes available GHc1, 664 million (equivalent $320 millions) for the 275 constituencies across the country. This covers $275 million dollars for the 275 constituencies and $45 million for outstanding commitments.
The IPEP, more commonly known as One-Million-Dollars-Per-Constituency, is a flagship government initiative aimed at meeting critical infrastructure needs identified by local actors at the constituency level.
In the run up to the 2016 election, Government promised to eradicate poverty and minimize inequality among socio-economic groups within geographical areas through direct provision of basic infrastructure at the constituency level, especially in rural and deprived communities.
To attain this, IPEP will be the main vehicle to direct capital expenditure towards constituency-level specific infrastructure and economic development priorities.
Under IPEP, each of the 275 constituencies is allocated the equivalence of US$1 million annually to be invested in infrastructure development initiatives of their choice, managed and implemented by the three development authorities (Northern Development Authority, Middle Belt Development Authority and Coastal Development Authority), under the office of the president, supervised by the Minister responsible for Special Development Initiatives.
The infrastructure projects to be implemented will support and complement other government infrastructure projects.
Since 2017, there has been budgetary allocation for every constituency in the country. However, due to the time it took to establish the three development authorities, the one million dollar per constituency has been temporarily administered through the minister for Special Development Initiatives. The three development authorities have since been established by an act of parliament, and, fully operational, therefore, government has issued commencement letters to cover the full amount of cedi equivalence of 1 million US dollar to all three Development Authorities to commence the implementation of constituency specific infrastructure needs.
This project is to ensure bottom up development approach where the infrastructure needs of every constituency will be collated, prioritised and provided through the allocated funds. Infrastructure projects such as drainage systems, footbridges, community town centres, reshaping roads, renovation of schools, provision of desks to schools, and many more are being undertaken in all constituencies across the country.
Needs assessment of every constituency in the country have been conducted to ascertain the basic infrastructure priorities of each constituency for which the IPEP funds should be applied over the next couple of years. The needs assessment is continually updated to capture the revolving basic infrastructure needs of all constituencies.
Infrastructure plays a well-documented role in economic development and poverty eradication. Consequently, the administration of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is deeply committed to closing Ghana’s infrastructure and poverty gap, which is currently estimated at USD 30 billion. The Government has expressly demonstrated its commitment by making funds available for basic infrastructure projects in every constituency across the country.