Numerous government projects in the newly formed Savannah Region are currently underway, with some already near completion. The initiatives, which focus on agriculture, education, health, and transportation, were launched in 2017 and aim to benefit every district in the area.
Saeed Muhazu Jibril, the Savannah Regional Minister, recently shared an update on the region’s progress during the Meet-the-Press series in Accra, organized by the Ministry of Information. Jibril explained that the region’s size presented both challenges and opportunities, including tourism, agriculture, natural resources, and water bodies.
Jibril noted that agriculture production in the region had improved, with the introduction of the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) and Planting for Exports and Rural Development (PERD) initiatives. The government has invested significantly in agriculture since the region’s creation in 2019, especially under PERD, which supports rural economic growth and improves farmers’ household incomes.
Jibril explained that PERD provides certified seedlings, extension services, business support, and regulatory support to farmers. The initiative has already had a positive impact, with yam production increasing from 578,116.65 tonnes in 2020 to 745,289.28 tonnes in 2021. Cowpea production has also risen from 17,196.93 tonnes to 23,674.85 tonnes, and soybean production is expected to increase to 29,314.00 tonnes in 2022.
To support agriculture, three warehouses are being built in the region, with two already completed and in use by farmers. Jibril also highlighted the success of PFJ, which has increased food production and incomes for farmers in the Savannah Region.
In terms of health, the government has supported the construction of 28 Community-Based Health Planning and Services (CHPS) compounds across the region, as well as health centers and an emergency clinic. The region has also benefited from three of the Agenda 111 hospital projects, with construction work progressing on the projects in North East Gonja, North Gonja, and Damongo.
The government is also investing in road infrastructure, with 76 road projects, covering about 2,108 kilometers, underway in the region. Key projects include the construction of Fulfulso-Bunjai, Daboya-Mankarigu, and the rehabilitation of town roads, including the entire Damongo township roads. New link roads and drains have also been built in the town to enhance traffic flow and reduce the cost of doing business.
Lastly, Jibril stated that his office was working closely with traditional authorities to resolve outstanding disputes in the area to enable development to flourish.