Development projects should not be forced on presidents- Dr. Sulley Gariba

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Photo ReportingDevelopment projects should not be forced on presidents- Dr. Sulley Gariba

05 September 2012

Dr. Sulley Gariba, the Development Policy Advisor at the Office of the President, has expressed his support for current efforts to define “a development plan framework that still allows the flexibility for individual governments” to assert their own leadership in selecting development projects.   


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He emphasized the difference between a vision for development, which he described as a set of general goals like expanded access to education, and a plan for development, that is, a particular strategy for achieving these goals. Dr. Gariba said that presidents’ decisions are guided by the national vision, which serves as the framework for all development projects.

Development projects instituted by one president often continue even after that president has left office.

Dr. Gariba explained that new presidents often see these projects through to completion. He added that when confronted with existing projects incompatible with their party ideologies, incoming administrations routinely dovetail these programs into programs of their own or cancel them altogether.

He noted that President Atta Mills faced widespread criticism for acting too slowly on campaign promises because he focused on completing projects initiated under Kufuor and thus struggled to fund his own projects.

He believes that while presidents should support ongoing projects if they feel so inclined, they should not be required to pursue specific projects because this would leave the president with too little authority.

Without control over their budgets, he feels that presidents would lack the elbowroom necessary to integrate their own development strategies into the larger national vision.

He stressed the importance of designing a development vision broad enough that politicians of any mainstream ideology can operate comfortably within its framework.

From: Adam Reese/



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