Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, in collaboration with the Ministry of
Lands and Regional Government, recently held a national consultative forum on
the National Development Plan 2017-2020 on proposed pillars and priorities.
The purpose of the forum was to provide a platform to update status of the National Development Plan (NDP) 2017-2020 preparations as well as proposed pillars and priorities of the NDP.
Held at the Paradise Suites Hotel, the forum was built upon from various series of consultations at various levels and it was well attended by different government stakeholders and regional government authorities.
The Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, Lamin Camara, speaking at the opening ceremony, said the forum was part of the process of developing the PAGE successor NDP, which started in mid-2015 with an inception forum that shared and discussed the initial roadmap for the process and various activities including consultative processes and structures as well as studies.
PS Camara added that the PAGE Mid-Term Evaluation and various other studies helped to provide information that influenced the proposal for the pillars of the NDP.
He said the forum however discussed the proposed pillars and priorities of the NDP, most especially with the regional and local authorities to enhance participation and ownership and increased alignment with local government authorities.
The permanent secretary, Ministry of Lands and Regional Governments, Bulli Dibba, said the consultative approach, together with the entire formulation process of the national development plan to include the regions, is appreciated.
“I want to acknowledge and appreciate the efforts done by the Ministry of Finance to deepen and broaden the consultative processes,” he said.
PS Dibba noted that the regions have very critical administrative structures for effective planning inputs, and participation from these levels help to reflect their priorities and make development more broad-based and balanced.
This forum, he added, will enhance the understanding of planning processes and priorities at the national level thus “help in translating our national development plans into local development plans”.
This participatory process is in line with the spirit of the national decentralization agenda which seeks to enhance participation, effective planning implementation and leadership at local levels.
He said: “My ministry strongly advocates for local development planning. I hereby call on the ministry of finance to help support in strengthening planning capacities at the decentralized level.”