UNDP Engages Northern Development Authority on Human Development Report Jul 10, 2018

The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) engaged the Northern Development Authority (NDA) to inform the new leadership of the Authority about its latest Human Development Report on Northern Ghana, and to seek support for the launch and dissemination of the report.

Ms. Gita Honwana Welch, the UNDP Country Director who led the team for the courtesy call, underscored the importance of the Northern Ghana Human Development Report. She indicated that, just like previous human development reports produced by UNDP for the nation, Western Region and other districts of Ghana, the current report provides baseline information on areas requiring development attention in the North.

"We partnered with the University for Development Studies (UDS) and the University of Ghana and collaborated with NDA (then SADA) to produce this report for the North and we would like the NDA to continue to have ownership of the report and support its launch, dissemination, and stakeholder engagements to accelerate the development of Northern Ghana,” stated Ms. Welch.

Highlighting the key areas of the report, Ms. Welch explained that the Northern Human Development Report explores development challenges and opportunities in Northern Ghana, and offers suggestions for poverty eradication in the zone. She noted that the research for the report focused on areas such as Education, Health and Livelihood. The study, according to her, moved beyond income and investigated livelihood issues relating to health, education and infrastructure gaps, as well as governance and environmental issues.

On his part, the Board Chair of the Northern Development Authority, Dr. Hakim Wemah, recounted the critical role played by UNDP in the establishment of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA), which has now been replaced by the Northern Development Authority. He noted that UNDP supported the organization of a Northern Development Forum which attracted the attention of many development partners for the region; provided support for the development of a masterplan to accelerate transformation of the zone, and recently worked with the Authority to develop a monitoring and evaluation framework as a management tool which will track progress and performance of the Authority.

Dr. Wemah also expressed the Authority’s excitement about the Northern Human Development Report. He said, “we have confidence in UNDP’s reports and are happy to have a report that will provide insights on areas to direct development attention to, in the North”. The Board Chair pledged the Authority’s support for the launch, dissemination, and further engagements on the report. He seized the opportunity to appeal to UNDP to coordinate the donor community to support the NDA to help eradicate poverty in Northern Ghana.

The upcoming Human Development Report examines human development outcomes in the context of significant socio-economic disparities in the Northern region and how best to promote transformation towards sustainable development. It is expected that findings and recommendations from the report will provide useful inputs for policy discussions and integrated development strategies to uplift the regions. The report is expected to be launched soon within the year.