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Ghana's MDG progress report show mix results

By GNA

Accra, Sept. 14, GNA- The "2008 Ghana Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)" report has indicated that the attainment of goals "four" and "five" would be elusive without renewed efforts and commitment towards a reduction in child mortality and improved maternal health in the last five years to 2015.

The Report revealed mixed results in respect to progress made so far, indicating that though Ghana was on track and was likely to attain the goals of halving poverty and achieving Universal Primary Education by the target year 2015, there still remains a lot of work to be done in respect to actualising the various achievement and making them to become reality to the lives of the people.

Dr. Peter Quartey, Head of the Sociology Department of the University of Ghana, who gave an overview of the Report, which was launched on Tuesday, explained that the 2008 Report was the fourth in the series to capture progress made so far made by Ghana.

He said progress to date was encouraging however, a lot of work needed to be done in ensuring true reflection of reduced poverty among the under privileged in society, as well as ensure quality education, quality health care nationwide and redoubled efforts to halt the spread of HIV and AIDS, combat malaria and malnutrition among other diseases.

Dr. Quartey said the report indicated that goal three, which calls for the promotion of gender equality and women empowerment and seven; ensuring environmental sustainability were likely to be partially achieved.

"However there still remains considerable work to be done as gender disparities still existed in various regions and sectors of the country, with low participation of women in decision making, while environmental sanitation, deforestation and land degradation rising from activities of miners remains a major setback to the efforts being made".

He said report was expected to feed into national policy dialogues and not only offer analysis of MDG trends and indicators, but also feed into the country-led and country-owned process of consultation, campaigning, research and report writing and serve as an advocacy tool to appeal to a wide audience to spur public debates and mobilise support for action and change.

Dr. Regina O. Adutwum, Director-General, National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), said since the adoption of the Millennium declaration in September 2000 and the derivation of the eight MDGs, Ghana has gained considerable experience with the use and implementation of the goals and anchored and mainstreamed them into various policies and programmes.

Dr. Adutwum mentioned policies and programmes such as the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS I) from 2003 to 2005, the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS II) from 2006 to 2009, and recently the draft Ghana Shared Growth Development which is expected to run from 2010 through to 2013 and called for renewed commitment, collaboration and networking among all stakeholders as well as development partners to ensure the harmonisation of efforts to attain a common goal.

She also commended the UNDP as well as the entire UN Systems for their effort and commitment and support towards the preparation of the report and expressed the hope that it would inform public discourse to help mobilise more resources to forge ahead to achieve the MDGs by the year 2015.

Ms. Ruby Sandhu-Rojon, who doubles as the UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, said the 2008 MDGs Report went beyond the usual by tackling the issue of Climate Change to help Ghana design programmes to address challenges that were likely to arise as a result of such change effects.

She said the UN Systems had been at the forefront of strengthening capacities of various Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to be able to design appropriate programmes and strategies to meet major challenges and to be able to effectively deliver their mandates and also provide financial as well as technical support to various projects to enhance socio-economic development of the country.

She mentioned that on September 20, 2010 at the opening of the 65th Session of the UN General Assembly, a High Level Plenary meeting would review the status of the MDG achievement and galvanise support of the world leaders to accelerate progress towards the achievement of the MDGs by 2015

Ms. Sandhu-Rojon announced that Ghana has been chosen among a few countries to gather evidence for international analysis on MDG progress, good practice and experiences as well as the challenges and opportunities for acceleration.

GNA