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Agric workers laud gov’t’s ‘planting for good and job’ campaign

Jan. 18, 2017, 3:53 p.m.

The General Agricultural Worker Union (GAWU) has lauded government’s plan to roll out a ‘planting for food and jobs’ programme, in a bid to promote food security in the country.

According to the union, the initiative will help solve some of the challenges bedevilling the agricultural sector such as the importation of unwholesome products.

The General Secretary for the GAWU, Edward Kariwe told Citi News, the union was hopeful that government will fully implement the proposal.

“It is a fantastic policy framework and we can only hope that it will be implemented. It will first address the production challenges within the agricultural sector, modernize agriculture, and also address the marketing challenges that we have in the sector. It is also meant to guarantee safety for Ghanaians by reducing imports,” he said.

“We have been hearing of rubber rice coming from various places and we are also aware that sometimes we have rotten poultry produce so for some time now the increase in imported produce has put the Ghanaian health in jeopardy,” he added.

He argued that the policy will help to ensure the quality and safety of food produce consumed in Ghana.

“If there is any agricultural policy that will lead to the reduction of food imports and increasing domestic production – apart from the domestic production, apart from the economic side of saving foreign exchange and creating jobs for farmers and increasing incomes for farmers, it promotes the health of Ghanaians.”

The Minister for Agriculture nominee, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, revealed at the University of Ghana’s 68th New Year School on Monday that the new government will launch a campaign themed ‘Planting for food and jobs’ in March 2017 to promote local agriculture.

According to Mr Akoto Afriyie, the campaign will create over 750,000 jobs for the youth.

He said government’s plan is to have the programme make use of information technology to drive national food security and ensure improved income for farmers.

‘Gov’t will modernize agriculture’

President Akufo-Addo noted at the same event that Agriculture in the country had declined drastically and his administration’s vision for the next four years, “is to modernize agriculture, improve production efficiency, and achieve food security and profitability for our farmers.”

He said, “District assemblies and traditional authorities will be assigned specific roles in agriculture development and we will adopt policies specifically targeted at supporting women in agriculture.”