THE International Labour Organisation (ILO) has organised a day?s forum for stakeholders from the districts in the Central Region engaged in the Ghana Decent Work Project to prepare them for the use of local tailors and dressmakers in the provision of free school uniforms to children in basic schools in the country.

At a forum at Agona Swedru, International Project Consultant on Local Economic Development (LED) of the Ghana Decent Work Project, Dr Nii Moi Thompson, said the government?s decision to provide free uniforms presented an opportunity for micro, small and medium enterprises in the garment and textile industry in the participating project districts to expand their work and improve their competitiveness.

Dr Thompson said the workshop selected the ILO project-participating districts to enable them to develop their local enterprises to increase productivity and create employment as well as increase income.

He said the workshop was to create awareness for the tailors and dressmakers to take advantage of the programme, adding that the technical preparation would be followed later.

According to Dr Thompson, should they perform well, they might be given the chance in the provision of uniforms for institutions such as nurses, the police and military since those uniforms were procured outside the country.
The participants were of the view that the award of contracts under the uniform policy should be transparent and devoid of partisanship.

The National Project Officer for Local Economic Development (LED), Mr Emmauel Baisie, advised members of the Ghana National Traders Association to formalise their businesses to enable them to benefit from the programme.

In a related development, the District Chief Executive for Gomoa West, Mr Theophilus Adioo-Mensah inaugurated the sub-committee on Product and Gainful Employment, an International Labour Organisation (ILO) programme under the Decent Work-Ghana Project at Apam in the Central Region.

In an address, Mr Adioo-Mensah said the committee would play a vital role in poverty reduction in the district. He said as a public and private interface at the local level, it would serve as an institution for social and economic dialogue.

The DCE said the fundamental role of the committee was to identify local economic potential and formulate strategies for realisation of the potential for inclusion in the development plans and mobilise both local and other resources in support of the plan.
He said the government had the desire to create decent employment for the teeming unemployed youth because job creation was one of the pillars that held the National Democratic Congress (NDC) manifesto.

Mr Aidoo-Mensah, therefore, expressed the hope that the partnership with the ILO would be able to create gainful employment.
He charged the committee members to be innovative in their quest to facilitate employment creation.

An International Project Expert with the ILO, Mr Nii Moi Thompson, said the sub-committee in Gomoa West was the eighth to be inaugurated in the region, and promised to train the members on how to assess funds to support small scale businesses in the district.
The 15-member committee is being chaired by Mr Ekow Eyanful, who also promised on behalf of the other committee members to work hard to justify the confidence reposed in them.

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