During the last week of September the three talents selected for the Local Economic Development  followed a short internship at different local governments in the Netherlands. Benjamin Asaah from Ghana went to the Municipality of Westland. We were send a nice  message which was internally communicated within the Municipality by Judith Zuiderwijk.

She wrote: ‘ This morning we went on excusion with Ghanian intern Benjamin Asaah, talented local practitioner from a Municipality in Ghana.  We visited Aquaterranova and Prominent where many possible solutions could be found for the problems they apparently have in Ghana in the field of waterpolicy (pollution and shortage), enery, waste, food and unemployment. Benjamin was incredibly enthousiastic, which worked very contagious on our hosts, Jeroen Strayer and myself! Afterwards Benjamin applauded the cooperation, advice and hospitality he received in the Netherlands. When I mentioned that Dutch politicians are working quite hard to work on the problems in the Netherlands, he started to laugh very hard and cried out: ‘ But you don’t have any problems in The Netherlands!’  How is that for putting things into perspective 😉

In additon to Judiths experience we also found a tweet from Wouter Wubben, ecology advisor at the Municipality of Westland.  He tweeted the following on his meeting with talent Benjamin Asaah, currently following the internship part of the Talent programme on ‘Local Economic Development’: We had interesting multidisciplinary discussion with Benjamin from #Ghana about economy and governance! @Talentforgov.

After contacting Wouter, he added: ‘I found it very interesting to exchange ideas with Benjamin. It seems there is still a long road ahead for Ghana to benefit from the revenues of  their countries’ national resources. If the country would be able to further process their raw materials they would benefit much more than only being the supplier of those materials. A shame, since they could develop this in Ghana. It seems that at this moment knowledge, capacity, the role of government and infrastructure seem are not up to this yet.
As always, Talent for Governance is pleased to see that the internship part of the programme has lead to valuable knowledge exchange between colleagues. Not only between the talent and his peers from the Dutch municipality, but also between the Westland colleagues working in different disciplines.