The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) has presented Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) worth GHC20,000 and seed money of GHC10,000 to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to help agriculture extension officers and farmers to mitigate the possible impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The West Africa Head of AGRA, Mr. Foster K. Boateng who made the presentation on behalf of AGRA, staff and implementing partners at a ceremony in Accra on Monday, April 20, 2019 said, “AGRA is raising GHC60 million to help farmers to purchase seeds, fertilizer and other basic needs in the 2020 production season.
The GHC10,000 donated by AGRA is to kick-start donations to the fund”. He urged other well-meaning Ghanaians and organizations to contribute to the fund. He also called on stakeholders such as the Chamber of Agribusiness to support the fund mobilization and ensure that farmers are able to produce enough food to feed the nation as it strives to recover from the impact of COVID-19.
Mr. Boateng added that, “even though a lot of attention was being focused on the health sector, which is good, food security for the country is also paramount, especially, at this time and must be looked at”.
He lauded the important role played by agriculture extension officers in contemporary times. The PPE which includes gloves, hand sanitizers and nose masks as well as ‘Veronica Buckets’ will enable the agriculture extension officers to go into the field to help farmers in the wake of COVID-19 to ensure that productivity is not negatively affected.
The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto who received the donation thanked AGRA for the gesture and described it as timely. He said, “AGRA is one of the few development partners who have been supporting the ministry to achieve its goals. This donation is an indication of the kind of support that AGRA has been giving the ministry over the past three and a half years”.
AGRA has prepared a plan in response to a request to provide additional support to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture during the COVID-19 period. This will be implemented in the coming days.
Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led, Africa-based and farmer-centered institution working to put smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming their farming from a solitary struggle to survive to a business that thrives.
Working in collaboration with our partners including African governments, researchers, development partners, the private sector and civil society AGRA’s work primarily focuses on smallholder farmers – men and women who typically cultivate staple crops on two hectares or less.
In the new strategy for 2017-2021, AGRA is supporting 11 African countries and 30 million smallholder farm households (150 million individuals) to increase their incomes and improve their food security. For more information, visit www.agra.org, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube