Agriculture is undoubtedly the mainstay of Ghana’s economy thus it will not be wrong for any individual or organizations to demand increment in budgetary allocation for this all-important sector.
Increased budgetary allocation has persisted as one of the prime agents in agriculture development, especially in rural settings as it serves as incentive for small holder Farmers.
It is for this reason that Public Agenda is supporting the submission made to by the Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana to the Ministry of Finance requesting the Government to increase allocation in the 2018 budget to cater for sustainable agriculture, food security, nutrition as well as post –harvest losses.
The Peasant Farmers Association’s proposal is in response to the call by the Ministry of Finance for citizens to make input into the preparation of the 2018 budget which is expected to be read in November this year.
It acknowledged that there had been an increase in budgetary allocation to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture in the 2017 budget and is hopeful for greater increase in the 2018 budget.
Ghana needs to priorities specific areas in the agricultural sector including investing in sustainable agriculture and Agro ecology, inclusion of nutrition sensitive crops as well as focusing on Post-harvest loss management. These for them, would impact positively on the lives of small holder farmers.
Even as it congratulates government for rolling out some policies such as the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’, the farmers bemoan that over the past three years Government efforts have been fragmented especially in investment in climate smart agriculture, which have not yielded the desired results due to the limited resources and the piecemeal approach of various climate change project implementation.
Furthermore, in the operationalization of the National Climate Change Policy and other related projects, little has been done by government in building the resilience of small holder farmers, protecting and sustaining the environment, protecting biodiversity and improving the livelihoods of small holder farmers especially women and vulnerable groups.
Public Agenda supports the concerns of the Peasant Farmers Association. We believe their observations are significant because it brings out the deficiencies in some our policies and suggest directions that ultimately inure to the benefit of us all.
Time to heed to the call of our famers is now!