With financing from the Ford Foundation, the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) has launched a project to track the use of mineral money in Ghana’s mining districts.
The two-year effort dubbed the “Mining Districts Development Scorecard (MDDS) project,” aims to improve social and human development “outcomes” by promoting openness and accountability.
The long-term purpose of the project is to empower and increase community engagement in natural resource governance and management in Ghana for improved development.
According to a statement released by the CDD-Ghana in Accra yesterday, the project is being executed in eight mining districts in the Western Region’s Tarkwa-Nsuaem, Prestea-Huni Valley, and Wassa East/Motor.
In the Western North Region, Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai; Birim North in the Eastern Region; Obuasi in the Ashanti Region; Asutifi North in the Ahafo Region; and Upper Denkyira West in the Central Region are among the others.
The CDD-Ghana stated that the districts were carefully chosen based on the number of mining resources they receive, as well as their socio-economic outlook, as determined by the Ghana Statistical Service’s District League Table scores and poverty ratings.
The presence of social accountability-demanding groups such as the media and civil society organizations that may use the project’s material for advocacy engagements, according to the statement, was another indicator for selection.
The project would be carried out in three phases, with the first, “the preliminary stage,” already underway and includes engagement with key players in charge of mineral resources and revenues.
The Minerals Commission, the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, and the Office of Local Government Service are among them.
The first phase of the project will also include a scoping tour of the selected districts to identify significant issues and actors, with the second phase focusing on data collecting from the eight districts.
According to the statement, this was done to determine how much mineral revenue they received, how much of it was used, what the funds were used for, and if they reacted to the communities’ social development needs.
“The data acquired will be used to rank the eight districts to determine which one is the best at resource governance management. The report will be released in the third phase “It was stated.
The project’s end purpose, according to Mr. Awal Mohammed, a Senior Research Analyst and Team Lead, Social Accountability, and SDGs Programming at CDD-Ghana, was to address the issue of transparency in the management of mineral tax revenues.
“If we have transparent and accountable institutions controlling these resources, they will be utilized efficiently to react to the socio-economic demands of the people, resulting in the development that is required,” he stated.