Forum on Inclusive Development held in Accra
A national forum on Inclusive Development aimed at providing the government with alternative policies to promote equal development
for the overall improvement in the standards of living of Ghanaians has taken place in Accra.
The forum on Inclusive Development is one of a series of forums to promote a national, evidence-based conversation on cross-cutting issues in the context of the Long-Term National Development Programme.
Ghana has grown at an average rate of around seven per cent per year since 2005, and in addition, between 1992 and 2013, the incidence of poverty in Ghana fell by more than half, thereby enabling Ghana to become one of the few sub-Saharan countries to achieve the MDG target 1.
However, in spite of this significant progress, inequality has been increasing in the country, and to this effect, the forum forms part of the process of preparing a long-term national development plan, comprising 10 medium-term plans, each four years long, to be implemented between 2018 and 2057.
Organised by the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) and United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the forum was to gather the views of all segments of society on what can be done to holistically address the problem of inequalities.
The forum also provided an opportunity to share ideas on how the poorest may be empowered to participate in and benefit equally from economic growth, and have a fair opportunity to participate in social development.
Chairman of the occasion, researcher and social commentator, Professor Agyemang Badu Akosa, speaking at the forum, said inequalities have dire consequence on the individual, families, communities, as well as the nation as a whole.
He stressed that inequalities threaten national cohesion and create insecurity, as well as create a fertile ground for communal conflict, violent crime, patronage and corruption, and result in the loss of credibility of state institutions.
Susan Ngongi, UNICEF representative, on her part, noted that if Ghana was able to half the number of people living in poverty, much more could be done. “We see beautiful cars, big houses around parts of Accra, but go to an isolated rural community and it can look much the same as 20 years ago.” Today in Ghana, one in four people live in poverty.
“Ghana’s development needs to become fair and its transformation must carry everyone equally, not just the wealthy. That is our challenge for today,” she bemoaned.
The forum was attended by representatives of Ministries, Departments and Agencies, as well as Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies, academia, economic think-tanks, development partners and civil society.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this news report do not necessarily reflect the position of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC)