The Volta Foundation, a development oriented Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), was to invest 100 million cedis into the formulation of a new strategic agricultural plan for the Volta Region. The Foundation would also consider other areas such as health, sanitation, education and water.
Mr Raymond Okudzeto, President of the NGO, announced these at the first anniversary celebration, at Hohoe, which coincided with the launch of the Volta Messenger, an 80-page publication of the Foundation. The publication would become the platform for the cross-fertilisation of ideas, investment promotion, tourism development, cultural reawakening and socio-economic empowerment.
Mr Okudzeto said the plan would rationalise all existing documentations into a blueprint for a rapid socio-economic development of the region. He also said the Foundation would soon set up 1 billion cedi micro-credit scheme to assist farmers and small-scale entrepreneurs.
Mr Okudzeto said the 'gramine' system, a module proven in Bangladesh as a workable system of transforming the lives of the poor through the credit system, would be explored and used to improve the lot of farmers. He said plans were far advanced for the beginning of a 'Jetropha project,' aimed at producing bio-diesel for local and foreign markets would be executed at eight centers in the region to employ about 100,000 people.
The President of the NGO said the Foundation was also exploring plans for the execution of a sugar cane project in collaboration with a Spanish agro-industrial group, in the South-Tongu district, which could employ 10,000 people adding he would continue to lobby the authorities for the take-off of the projects.
Miss Pamela Bridgewater, the US Ambassador in Ghana, said the region would benefit from 100 million dollars through the Millennium Challenge compact in various fields. She said 67 US aided development projects were being executed in the region in health, education, water and sanitation sectors as well as cultural exchange programmes.
Miss Bridgewater entreated the people to harness both human and material resources toward the improvement of agriculture and housing sectors and urged the people to support the NGO to achieve its objectives.
Miss Elizabeth Ohene, Minister for State, called on the people to contribute to national development and refrain from thinking of being marginalised. Mr John Peter Amewu, Hohoe District Chief Executive, said the district was ready to forge partnership with business concerns for benefit of the people. Miss Bridgewater has been enstooled as 'Mamaga' of Volta Region under the stool name Mamaga Volta Nenyo 1.