Dr. Francis Bawaana Dakura, the re-elected Member of Parliament (MP), Jirapa constituency in the Upper West Region under the banner of the National Democratic Congress(NDC) has shared his vision with The Enquirer, for Jirapa’s development and promised a seed capital of GHc100,000 fund for developmental projects and programmes in the area.
The Jirapa constituency MP identified four pillars upon which he would prosecute his accelerated development agenda, namely: agriculture, special education, enterprise initiative and water as well as power supply.
Dr. Dakura said, he was in a fixed position to industrialize the constituency and would, therefore, not spare any step necessary to achieve his objective. His words: “For us, education and agriculture are keys; I want to turn Jirapa as an education hub and agricultural enclave for food security.”
He assured to procure for supply of tractors and ploughs to the farmers in the area to reduce the traditional cutlass and hoe method of agriculture in the district.
Besides, turning the largest district in the Upper West into agricultural hub as well as empowering women economically, he admitted engaging the youth into productive ventures would be another top priority to reduce youth unemployment in the constituency.
Special Development Fund
Specifically, Dr Dakura said, he is putting a colossal sum of GHc100,000, as a seed capital for what he named as, “Jirapa Education and Enterprise Fund (JEEF)” with the sole aim of eliminating poverty and enhancing living standard, among others in the constituency
He told the news portal, the fund will be strictly managed and disburse by a special committee to be formed by the constituents on both Education, Agricultural and the Enterprise initiatives to ensure that the needed and deserving beneficiary women and youth are catered for.
“I am setting up this 100,000 thousand Ghana Cedis fund from my personal resources to boost education, agriculture and enterprise initiative for my people. The youth, the women, and all able person willing to work will be cater for,”
“I have started purchasing tractors and ploughs to tilde the lands, because, that is the first point we have to tackle, the land is there, but putting them into productive agriculture to produce food for us is the case.”
In addition, he said it is the view that with the fund, the youth would be able to access of about GHc2000 refundable for a start to boost agriculture and education activities as well as other initiatives.
Dr. Dakura explained that apart from his political promises to help develop the area during election campaign, he also has personal passion to help the needy.
“I will use my resources and as well as my MPs Common Fund, to develop the area, Jirapa need better and as MP, I will ensure I deliver my promises to improve what I had done few years ago,” Dr Dakura told The Enquirer.
Generally, the Jirapa Legislator said he would hold discussion with all the stakeholders in the over 12 communities to encourage and ask for support to implement the projects, an investments he promised to improve proper water and power supply and well-laid roads to woo industrialists to the district.
Dr Dakura said the constituency is bordered by six different constituencies namely Lawra, Lambussie, Nadowli-Kaleo, Nandom, Sissala West and Dafema-Bissie, with over 15 deprived communities which include Guo, Kure, Pokure, and Tamapuo all within the Duori Traditional Area in the Jirapa District.
The rest of the communities which Dr Dakura promised to revolutionized agricultural and youth enterprise are ,Ullio, Gobazele, Sablili, Tizza, Tugo, Hain, Kane and the traditional town Jirapa.
He said every citizen of Jirapa, especially market women, youth and every member of the communities who are able and willing to initiate either agriculture or enterprises would be roll onto the JEEF Fund and supported with the fund, which he said will be roll on in his three months in parliament.
NDC Unity and Victory
Dr Dakura was a Member of Parliament of Jirapa Constituency from 2009 to 2012, but lost the seat to Mr. Paul Derigubaa, an independent candidate.
He came to parliament through by-election in 2009 following the demise of Mr. Edward Salia, then incumbent MP shortly after NDC won the 2008 general election.
With his three years in the shoes of late Salia, Dr Dakura brought significant development into the area, which he emphasized were the tested spirit that led to his returned to parliament in December, 2016.
According to him, prior to the 2012 general election a seed of disunity was sowed between the party supporters and sympathizers when he defeated his main contender at the party primaries in 2011.
He said disunity and acrimonies among party faithful were reflection of new trends of events in the constituency, because until 2009 there had never been parliamentary primaries in the history of the party since 1992.
The genesis of the disaffection, he said was when his main contendant went Independent after his defeat and used same as a basis to deceive most of the youth whom later regretted their actions for voting against him at the general elections.
Dr Dakura debunked then claims that if the then independent candidate (Paul Derigubaa) had not contested, he would have lost the seat to the opposition, stating, he lost the election just less than one per cent votes and that he would have rather won the seat if Paul had not contested.
He said, despite the challenges, he had had to stand his grounds and work hard to stabilize the situation for the NDC, nothing, ” there were a lot of unfounded allegation against me that I was not going to support the party, but I stayed behind and supported the party till date.”
The Jirapa Legislator averred that prior to the 2016 and due to his continues good relation within the youth, the youth appreciated his humility after sober reflection and some have had to confess of disappointing him (Dakura) in 2012.
Nonetheless, he said, the youth again made new leave following his continue good relation with them and gave him the maximum support at the 2016 general election, which made the NDC won with huge margins.
At the December 2016 election Dr. Dakura whipped his main contendant, Paul Darigubaa with overwhelm majority votes of 15,390 representing 59.29%, while Mr. Darigubaa, managed to gained 8,249 votes representing 31.78%.
This, he noted proved that had it not been the disunity and seed of acrimony sowed among the youth who acted with aggression the NDC with him would not have lost the seat in 2012 to Indepenendent candidate Paul Darigubaa.
The party, he revealed is currently united and solid because all factions which emerged in the 2012 election had resolved and supported him in 2016, and expressed the assurance that with the continued support despite the NDC not in power, he would deliver his promises to the constituency.
The Re-elected Member of Parliament, Dr Francis Dakura, said that he is happy to return to the House of the Legislatures and promises to contribute meaningfully on the floor of parliament and at the committee level.
The Minority ranking member of Gender and Social Protection and Foreign Affairs Committee of Parliament, noted that he is glad to be on such committee, because he has personal passion for the vulnerable like women and children and would give useful contribution to the development of Jirapa and the nation.
“As MP and the Minority ranking member of Gender and Social Protection Committee of Parliament, I must say that I am glad and the people of Jirapa should be, because I has passion for the people I represented, especially the vulnerable and women, haven grew up from a humble family as the only male child among many female siblings,” he said.
He added that the people of Jirapa should expect a very useful work from him in parliament and assured his supporters his contributions would continue to be of a high caliber.
As Policy and Civil Engineering Consultant, he promised to use his experience to lobby for developmental projects for the constituency.
Dr. Dakura thanked his constituents, especially the chiefs, the immediate former District Chief Executives (DCE), the women, the youth and all citizens of Jirapa both within and outside for believing in him, and not any of the disunity allegations that were levied against him.
He also urged supporters to stay calm and not allow themselves to be provoked by activities of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), stating, “what is most important for us now as a constituency and a district is how to develop Jirapa and urged the entire constituent not to allow politics to divide them.
He further promised to work cordially with any person elected as DCE for Jirapa by the incumbent NPP government to ensure that the district gets its fair share of the national cake.