SADA: Gov’t Terminates Guinea Fowl, Tree-Planting Contracts With Asongtaba

The Government of Ghana has terminated two contracts signed between the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) and Asongtaba Cottage Industries (ACI). The contracts terminated relate to a guinea fowl rearing and processing project and an afforestation and tree growing project. A statement from the Presidency signed by Mr Ben Dotse Malor, Senior Communications Adviser/presidential Spokesperson said: “President John Mahama has instructed the Board of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) to act in consultation with the Attorney General to terminate two contracts it entered into with Asongtaba Cottage Industries (ACI)”. The statement said the President’s directive “follows the submission of a report by the Minister responsible for Development Authorities, Dr Ahmed Mustapha, regarding two SADA projects”. It said: “…While the projects were viable and held the potential for the creation of a significant number of jobs in the fragile Savannah area, SADA had not established the systems and mechanisms for the monitoring and supervision of these projects to ensure that the state receives value for money”. The statement further said: “The President has also requested the SADA board to hold consultations with the forestry commission and the ministry of local government to work out a strategy for the proper implementation of the afforestation and tree growing project on a decentralised basis”. “The report further noted that sufficient expertise still existed within the savannah research institute and the University of Development Studies to redesign and implement a strategy that could properly harness the potential of the guinea fowl industry and turn it into a major income earner for the people of the Savannah belt”, the statement said. The President has further instructed the SADA board to immediately strengthen SADA’s systems of accountability to ensure that the authority is able to account for any resources committed by the Government for the Accelerated Development of the Savannah areas. Government sunk about Ghc48 million Ghana cedis into the two projects but there was little to show for them. In 2009 Asongtaba was awarded a contract to train 32,000 youth in seven modules. One of the modules was the guinea fowl rearing project aimed at training 2000 youth in guinea fowl rearing in the three regions of the north.