Mr Siapha Kamara, Chief of Party, People for Health, USAID and SEND-GHANA, has called on Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to commit part of their Internally Generated Fund (IGF) to support malaria eradication activities at the local levels.
He said the 0.5 per cent allocation was inadequate to deal with malaria issues and urged the Assemblies to channel part of their IGF into malaria intervention activities to supplement the 0.5 per cent allocation.
Mr Kamara made the call in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) during a district-level policy dialogue held at Agotime-Ziope in the Volta Region.
It was to discuss the outcome of research conducted in 17 Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) on the 0.5 per cent District Assemblies Common Fund (DACF) for malaria and malaria-related expenditure in the Medium Term Development Plans.
He said Ghana was among 12 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa with high malaria cases, therefore, there was the need to invest more resources in interventions geared towards malaria eradication to reverse the situation.
Mr Kamara disclosed that eight out of the 17 districts in which the research was conducted had complied with the Common Fund Secretariat guidelines, which requested MMDAs to set aside 0.5 to support malaria programmes.
He said the remaining nine, however, did not comply with the guidelines, adding that the non-compliance was not helpful in the country’s quest to eradicate malaria.
Mr Kamara said the common reason for non-compliance was attributed to the lack of clear guidelines on the utilisation of the fund and non-request by District Health Management Teams.
He called for effective collaboration between MMDAs and DHMTs to ensure that the 0.5 was deducted and used for its intended purpose as stipulated in the Common Fund Secretariat guidelines
The Chief of Party said the collaboration would ensure efficiency and accountability and also help them execute the malaria eradication agenda with ease.
Mr John Kwaku Amenyah, District Chief Executive (DCE) for the area, pledged the Assembly’s commitment to supporting malaria eradication programmes with 0.5 per cent allocation.
He said financial resources were needed to fight malaria in the district and call for support from stakeholders.
The training forms part of the P4H Project being implemented by Send Ghana in collaboration with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) and Penplusbytes.
The project is focused on five thematic areas including HIV, malaria, family planning and maternal and child health, nutrition, and WASH.
In essence, it helps sustain efforts towards ensuring budget justice at both district and the national level.