Wednesday, 18 November, 2020 - 13:15

As part of the implementation of the Socioeconomic Development Program of the cross-border zones liberated from onchocerciasis along the Regions of Central South and Central East of Burkina Faso and the Upper East border of Ghana, the ECOWAS Commission officially handed, on Sunday 15 November 2020, village water supply facilities over to the cross-border communities.
The infrastructures were handed over by Mr. Sékou Sangaré, ECOWAS Commissioner for Agriculture, Environment and Water Resources under the co-chairmanship of Mrs. Josiane Zoungrana, Governor of the Central South Region, representing the Prime Minister, Head of the Government of Burkina Faso and the Chief of staff, Mr. Mohamed A. Azongo, representing the Regional Minister of the Upper East Region who was initially designated to represent the Vice-President of Ghana.
In each of the 4 twin beneficiary villages (Barré/Namoo, Narguia/Feo, Kolinia/Mayoro and Bingo/Widnabaa), 1 positive borehole is drilled (with a minimum flow rate of 4 m3/h). Each borehole is equipped with a submersible pump powered with solar plates (1,500 W) and combined with 2 twin water storage towers (2 polytanks of 10 m3 each). In addition to supplying drinking water facilities for both people and animals, 0.5 ha of operating irrigated farming plots have been developed on each site. All these facilities are delimited by a wire fence and reinforced by the planting of plant species (quickset hedge).
The realization of these works (boreholes, drinking water, market gardening, etc.) was made possible thanks to the signing of a funding agreement in November 2017 between the ECOWAS Commission and The Hunger Project Burkina Faso and Ghana selected following a call for proposals for technical supports.
The ambition of the ECOWAS Commission through the realization of these facilities is to initiate an implementation process of specifically cross-border actions suitable for promoting better living together and strengthening social cohesion among communities regardless of the borders separating them, thus reinforcing the effectiveness of the vision of an ECOWAS of Peoples undertaken by the region since 2007.
Adding to the commitment of the beneficiary populations to properly use the facilities for the intended purpose without compromising their maintenance, the representatives of the Burkinabe and Ghanaian Governments all reiterated their willingness to further support the ongoing initiatives of the ECOWAS Commission at both national and regional levels.
Moreover, the Private sector of agricultural inputs (AMG Ghana, Syngenta and OCP Morocco specifically), promised to provide the 8 beneficiary villages with a contribution of 100 bags of agricultural inputs (fertilizers, pesticides, seeds) for the next production season to support this ECOWAS the relevance of this ECOWAS cross border development approach.
For the ECOWAS Commission, the experiences and lessons learned from this pilot initiative could facilitate their scaling up through one or more large-scale projects still in the areas of strengthening the living together and social cohesion among cross-border populations and the effectiveness of the vision of an ECOWAS of Peoples. ECOWAS also seeks to promote the development of gender by reducing the difficult access to drinking water, the responsibility of which is primarily entrusted to women and children in the villages.