The Northern Savannah Development policy think tank has called for broader consultations in the implementation of government’s ‘One Village, One Dam’ policy which is set to begin this year.

The Vice President Mahamudu Bawumia participating in an annual festival at Tumu in the Upper West region, on Saturday, March 17, disclosed that government will commence the project in the three regions up north in fulfillment of its campaign pledge to expand small scale irrigation structures owned and managed by communities.

The think tank said the implementation of the policy will bring improvement in crop farming and also boost animal husbandry and commended government for the “giant initiative”.

However, it said all the dams may become white elephant unless government “tread very cautiously” by conducting extensive assessment needs of the people where these dams were to be constructed to avoid being underutilized or abandoned.

According to him, government and all stakeholders responsible for the implementation of the policy should not leave it in the “hands of politicians alone”, and called for all inclusive approach.

“We are urging that a matter such as the One Village One Dam is so serious that it should not be left in the hands of the politicians alone. This therefore calls for the involvement of technocrats spanning all fields of endeavor and these include the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Planning Officers of the various MMDAs, Ghana irrigation authority and the various agricultural faculties across the country,” it suggested.

It acting Executive Director, Abu Kansangbata said at a news conference that the implementation of the policy would be smooth and successful if government engages the youth and leaders of the communities on a number of issues including the siting of the dams.

“For example, lack of consultation of the people would likely lead to the siting of a dam or dugout on a tomb of a very important personality in the area. When this is done then it would be surprising to find out that the affected area will refuse or shun from using the dam or dugout,” he said, adding: “This is why Northern Savannah Development Policy Think Tank is advocating for all inclusive approach before, during and after the implementation of the One Village One Dam policy of the government”.

The think tank added further that the construction of the facilities will help reduce rural urban migration and called on the people to support the policy and eschew taking partisan stance in the implementation process.