President John Dramani Mahama has cut sod for the construction of an irrigation dam aimed at creating over 5,000 jobs when completed.
A piece of land has been acquired for the facility at Tamne, a community in the Garu-Tempane District of the Upper East region, and it will be called after the name of the area― the Tamne Dam. The dam is expected to irrigate 3,250 acres of land.
The President was speaking Monday in the Garu-Tempane District at the beginning of a two-day visit to the region. The visit forms part of his nationwide stewardship trip dubbed: “Accounting to the People Tour”.
“This irrigation dam will allow us to create more than 5,000 direct and indirect jobs. The land would be apportioned to farmers. They would be assisted. We are going to set up a farmer service centre. All the farmers who are working on the project will be registered. They would be provided with fertilisers. They would be provided with seeds. They would get agric extension advice. Their lands would be ploughed for them. It would be harrowed. They would use planters to plant the seeds.
“They would get the most modern agricultural technologies to execute their work. The farmer service centre will be the heartbeat of all farmers in the area. So, if you need tractor services, ploughing, you will go and register, they will send the tractor to plough for you. The farmer service centre would even be a microfinance centre. So, if your wife gives birth and you need 100 Ghana cedis or 50 Ghana cedis to go and look after her, if you go to the farmer service centre, they would give it to you,” the Mahama outlined.
50 farmer service centres to be built across Savannah Zone
The irrigation dam project, the President emphasised, would transform agriculture in the eastern part of the Upper East Region.
“It’s going to revolutionise agriculture in this area. And we are building fifty of those farmer service centres across the whole of the Savannah Zone. So, it’s not only Bawku. It’s going to be different locations where we would assist farmers. We want the Green Revolution to start now. I have told the Ministry of Food and Agriculture that before the end of this year I want to launch the first farmer service site. They must complete it and I will launch it before the end of this year,” Mahama disclosed.
Bawku to drink treated water from White Volta
President Mahama extended his tour Monday to Misiga, near Bawku, where he also commissioned a water project to boost up water security in the Bawku Municipality.
The project is expected to increase the supply of water to the area by 4,000 cubic metres in a day.
“A lot of the areas that do not have water presently will start receiving water. At first, the whole distribution network for water distribution in Bawku was 12 kilometres. Today, we have laid a new distribution network, connecting areas of Bawku that didn’t have water before, and we laid 55 kilometres of distribution network to take the water all over Bawku Township.
“We are also going to continue to expand it so that the Misiga area and all the communities along the roots that the waterline passes to Bawku can also be served with some of the water. But this is a first step towards solving Bawku’s water problem,” the President said.
He added as a crowd of residents applauded: “Bawku is an important commercial centre and it’s growing very fast. And so we need a permanent source of water that can provide enough water for Bawku. So, I have asked the Ghana Water Company Limited to design a system, they’ve done it, which will draw water from the White Volta and treat it and pump it to Bawku Township and surrounding areas.”