NDPC Chairman Raises Alarm Over Ghana's Rural-Urban, North-South Development Gaps

Despite overall improvements in the delivery of basic services across Ghana, Chairman of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) Prof. George Gyan Baffuor, has raised concerns over the persistent disparities between urban and rural areas, as well as between the southern and northern regions of the country.
Speaking at the 2023 District League Table (DLT) Awards ceremony on Friday, March 1, 2024 in Accra, Prof. Baffuor noted that, according to the 2022 DLT evaluation, there had been advancements in a number of areas, including water, electricity, and sanitation.  
However, he emphasized the need to address the glaring development gaps that continue to plague Ghana's quest for balanced and inclusive growth. "There have been improvements in performance in some districts across the country. Indeed, there has been improvement in the delivery of basic services such as sanitation, water, and electricity.  “There are, however, disparities between the urban and rural areas, as well as the southern and northern parts, that require attention," Prof. Baffuor stated.
The DLT, a flagship initiative of the NDPC, has evolved over the years, incorporating indicators from the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Agenda 2063 to generate district-level data and analysis for achieving these international commitments. The assessment focuses on sectors such as education, health, nutrition, water, sanitation, energy, governance, and child protection. While lauding the overall progress, Prof. Baffuor emphasized the need for targeted interventions to address the disparities that continue to hinder inclusive development.
He highlighted the Commission's engagement with Parliamentary Select Committees for Poverty Reduction Strategy and the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, underscoring the DLT's role in driving socio-economic transformation."Permit me to indicate that the District League Table has become a critical tool to promote balanced development across the country. In recent times, NDPC has engaged the Parliamentary Select Committees for Poverty Reduction Strategy and the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development on the role of DLT in the current socio-economic transformation," Prof. Baffuor said. The indicators used for the DLT assessment largely reflect the SDGs Targets prioritized in the 2023 Technical Report on SDGs Transformation and Commitments, including targets related to education, sanitation, energy efficiency, and institutional accountability.
Prof. Baffuor stressed the importance of strengthening the DLT to promote equal development across the country, saying, Ghana's efforts to achieve socio-economic transformation require that the DLT is strengthened to promote equal development across the country. The NDPC Chairman's call for addressing the rural-urban and north-south divides comes at a crucial juncture, as Ghana strives to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and Agenda 2063 targets.  While celebrating the progress made, Prof. Baffuor's remarks underscore the need for a concerted effort to ensure that no region or community is left behind in the pursuit of development and socio-economic transformation. The Korle Klottey Municipal Assembly was adjourned the Best Performing Assembly whilst Ayawaso West and Tema Municipal Assemblies were awarded the second and third positions at the awards ceremony.
The Ledzokuku, Ashaiman and Tema West assemblies emerged first, second and third best respectively in the most improved Assembly category in the water sector in the year under review.
The Adentan Municipal Assembly emerged as the Most Outstanding Assembly in the sanitation sector, with Tema West and Weija-Gbawe Assemblies coming in second and third positions, respectively in that category. The Nandom, Asutifi North and Gomoa Central assemblies were given special awards for striving to improve in the face of inadequate resources.


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