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11.12.2007 General News

Farmers demand warehousing facilities


The National Farmers and Fishermen Award Winners Association has suggested to the Government to establish ware-house facilities in all districts of the country for the storage and distribution of foodstuffs.

The facilities, which should be provided on cost recovery basis, would eliminate some of the bottlenecks that have encouraged post-harvest losses and undermined national food security.

Mr Philip Abayori, National President of the Association made the suggestion on behalf of the Association at the 23rd National Farmers Day celebration at Wa during which 62 farmers, fishers and Agricultural Extension staff were honoured for their hard work.

He noted that farmers and fishers were not enjoying the fruits of their labour as a result of the lack of agricultural infrastructure like ware housing systems, inefficient post-harvest technology, producer pricing and marketing systems.

He said it was also necessary that farmers and fishers be fully represented in mainstream agricultural activities such as negotiations, implementation and evaluation of all agricultural projects as a way of strengthening the sector to boost production.

"We have been ignored by institutions mandated by government to support efforts aimed at ensuring national food security job creation and poverty reduction".

The Association expressed concern about alleged imposition of heavy fines on Ministry of Food and Agriculture in respect to land used for the execution of agricultural projects and called on the Chief Justice and Traditional rulers to take a critical look at the issue.

"Why are communities demanding such money from government and still enjoying the benefits of those facilities fully paid by the state for their own gains"?

Mr Abayori appealed to the government to provide a suitable building that could house the offices of farmers' and fishers' organisation in appreciation of their hard work and contribution to nation-building.

He observed that a building in Accra opposite the Teachers' Hall was put up in the First Republic to accommodate all farmers' organizations, but to their surprise, it had now been pulled down.