Citizen Watch Ghana, a think-tank organisation, has expressed deep worries over government’s inability to establish a single factory in the Volta Region under the 1D1F programme.
“We can’t understand why government and the 1D1F coordinating unit have abandoned the Volta Region although the industry potentials in the region are huge”, said Mr. Elikem Agbenyega, Coordinator for Citizen Watch Ghana.
He said President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo normally visits the Ekumfi Juice factory as well as factories in other regions….asking why the president is finding it difficult to find the Volta Region exciting, since it equally has local resources as compared to other regions.
According to Mr. Agbenyega, the construction of a sweet potato factory in Tsito has been halted for some time now, even as there is huge sweet potato cultivation underway.
He said the region is proud itself with commodities such as avocado, cocoa, ginger, lemon-grass, cassava among others, but it has been exempted from the ‘national cake’ – adding that it is critical for the Volta Region to be the next focus, as it has equal potentials to the Central, Eastern and other regions.
According to Mr. Agbenyega, government must provide credit-support for the private sector through the Exim Bank Ghana, or direct credit from government through the Ministry of Finance, for the construction of such factories in the region. This, he said, will create a massive number of jobs for the youth and out-growers in the region.
He expressed the need for government to provide subsidies for products or produce under the 1D1F programme, so they become more competitive on both local and international markets.
He also called on government to do the needful by constructing road networks which would lead to these factories in the districts.
Citizen Watch Ghana understands that 18 factories have been accredited so far, and an additional 50 are expected to be accredited; and this should bring to almost 70 the number of 1D1F projects.
Government has indicated that there will be a pineapple processing factory in the Ekumfi district; a pineapple and orange processing factory in the Komenda-Edina-Eguafo-Abrem (KEEA) municipality; and a cassava starch processing factory in the Fanteakwa district.
There will also be a cashew processing factory in Tema; a fruit processing factory in the West Akim district; a shea butter processing factory in the Accra metropolis; an avocado processing factory in Ningo-Prampram; and the cultivation and processing of sweet potato into bread, chips and biscuits in Gomoa West.
In the manufacturing and distribution of pharmaceuticals, three factories have been marked for the Nsawam-Adoagyiri municipality, the Accra metropolis and the Suhum district.
There will also be an agricultural inputs manufacturing plant in the Tema metropolis; a garment factory in Accra; and a tile and brick production factory at Tanoso in the Brong Ahafo Region.