The Asunafo South District Assembly hosted a training event for the Participation, Accountability, and Integrity for a Resilient Democracy (PAIReD) program, a citizen-centered governance initiative launched by the German Development Cooperation (GIZ). On April 29, 2024. As the program focus on positioning citizens at the centre of accountable governance.

Hon. Frank Aduse Poku, the District Chief Executive, warmly welcomed participants, including trainees and facilitators from GIZ and the Ahafo regional office, departmental heads, staff, and traditional authorities expressed his gratitude for the partnership with GIZ. He emphasized the importance of accountable governance for the people of Asunafo South and highlighted the district’s commitment to the PAIReD program. He noted that the program aims to promote transparency, effectiveness, and sustainability in District. He concluded by stating that the people of Asunafo South will benefit greatly from the PAIReD program.

Bismark Adu, the Regional Planning Officer, commended the Asunafo South District for its enthusiasm and dedication to the program, noting that only three districts in the region were selected to participate. He emphasized the significance of this opportunity, encouraging participants to make the most of the training.

The first presentation, delivered by Mr. Aliu Amin, provided an in-depth overview of the PAIReD program. He explained that the program was commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and would run from October 2023 to September 2027, with a budget of 22.5 million Euros. Mr. Aliu highlighted the program’s goals, including increasing transparency, effectiveness, and sustainability in domestic revenue systems and strengthening database land use planning by District Assemblies. He also stated the implementing partners, including MLGDRD, GRA, NDPC, GAS, IAA, OHLGS, and others.

The second presentation, delivered by Mr. Jacob Jimah Baker, Accountability Advisor GIZ, focused on the stakeholders involved in the program. He identified key stakeholders at the regional level, including the Regional Minister, CHRAJ, Controller and Accountant General Department and the Internal Auditors. At the district level, stakeholders included the District Chief Executive, District Coordinating Director, Internal Auditors, departmental heads, CHRAJ, and the Gender Desk Officer. Mr. Baker explained that the PAIReD program has been divided into Southern and Northern hubs, with offices in Accra and Tamale, respectively, to ensure effective implementation.

Following the presentations, participants engaged in a group activity, forming three teams focused on Planning and Budgeting, Accountability, and Land use Planning. Each group was tasked with comparing the Annual Action Plans, selecting relevant programs, and creating a budget for its implementation. The Planning and Budgeting group focused on allocating resources effectively, the Accountability group concentrated on ensuring transparency and responsibility, and the Land use Planning group worked on optimizing resource utilization. Group leaders then presented their findings and budgets, demonstrating a collaborative approach to accountable governance.

Through this activity, participants learned the value of collaboration, effective communication, and stakeholder engagement in achieving common goals. They realized that by working together and sharing knowledge, they could overcome challenges and achieve sustainable development in their district.

Mr James Ata Era, DPO on behalf of Hon. DCE Frank Aduse Poku thanked participants for their active engagement and emphasized the significance of networking in achieving common goals. He highlighted how the PAIReD program brought together various stakeholders, including departmental heads, staff, and traditional authorities, to work towards a shared objective. Mr. James stressed that networking is essential for capacity building, knowledge sharing, and effective governance. He encouraged participants to continue collaborating and learning from each other to ensure the success of the PAIReD program and the betterment of the Asunafo South District.

With a renewed sense of purpose and a deeper understanding of the PAIReD program, participants departed the training event, equipped to contribute to the promotion of accountable governance and sustainable development in the district.

Story by Emmanuel Kwadwo Duah, DIO