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14.10.2005 Regional News

Lecturer calls for the decentralisation ...

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...of Agricultural Extension Approaches Accra, OCT 13, GNA - The Head of Agricultural Extension Department of the College of Agriculture and Consumer Sciences, University of Ghana Legon, Dr. Edward Ernest Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. has emphasized the need for full decentralization of Agricultural Extension approaches to meet the specific needs of farmers in the various Districts within the country. Dr. Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. was delivering a paper titled "Worldwide Agricultural Extension Reforms - Is Ghana Falling In Line?" at the Third Inter-Faculty Lecture organised by the College at Legon. He identified decentralization as an important step for participatory approaches to extension, so that participatory approach would help reduce problems that confronts Extension Officers in the field.

Dr. Ackah-Nyamike stressed the need to localize Agricultural Extension Reforms at the District levels, based on the prevailing conditions.

This, he said will make Extension delivery more efficient and effective. He stressed that Ghana's main aim for decentralization was to create a conducive environment within which people could participate in their own development and also encourage self-help wonership of development

programmes. However, this has not yielded much successes over the years due to lack of adequate training in extension management and lack of full complement of staff to address the issues. Dr. Ackah-Nyamike argued that decentralization should be pursued to its fullest rather than in parts.

He called on policy makers to empower each District to develop its own Agricultural Extension Reforms based on its local conditions.

He stressed the need to draw lessons from countries already practising these reforms.