Prioritise Women Farmers For Agribusiness Development – Konadu
A former First Lady Nana Konadu Agyemang Rawlings has called on stakeholders in the Agriculture sector to prioritise women farmers when it comes to the offer of grants, support packages and capacity building.
According to her, this will aid in the development and transformation of women in the sector.
Speaking at the launch of the Women in Food and Agriculture (WOFAGRIC) and the Gold in the Soil Awards, she said that many Ghanaian women engage in agriculture as their main economic activity thus the need to empower them in every way.
“Women are highly capable of contributing massively to the agriculture sector though many sectors of our society still relegate women to the background. Until women become an absolute part of national development both in quality and quantity, Ghana cannot become what it truly should be,” she said.
“For 38 years, I have worked diligently and persistently on developing women economically, socially, politically and culturally. It is an uphill task. I have also seen the strength and courage of these women and how much of an influence they keep having on the agriculture sector. We have no excuse of not giving them the needed support to thrive,” she added.
She further highlighted the economic benefits of women empowerment to agriculture development stating that culturally, in most parts of Ghana, women do not own land thus making it difficult for them to participate in commercial agriculture.
This she said should be looked at as, “When women are empowered, it is a different thing. So, we need serious participation and engagement of everyone within the agribusiness value chain to help women in every sector.”
First Secretary at the Canadian High Commission, Marie-Claude Harvey stated that, “the Canadian government will continue to work closely with selected women Farmer-Based Organisations throughout Ghana through the ‘Modernizing Agriculture in Ghana’ program to add value to their agricultural production.”
The Director of Business Banking, Absa Ghana, Grace Anim-Yeboah also stated that the bank is introducing new strategies to help provide funding and support for women in the Agriculture sector to achieve more.
“As a bank, we believe in the significant value that agriculture presents to the nation and therefore look to support the initiative. The bank has over the years been supporting agribusinesses. With the transition into Absa Ghana, we are now better positioned to support SME agribusinesses especially women entrepreneurs. Products are being designed to meet the specific needs of agribusinesses. We want to make Agriculture great again and we can do it,” she stated.
The Women in Food and Agriculture (WOFAGRIC) and the Gold in the Soil Awards is aimed at transforming and sustaining women in agriculture.
It forms part of efforts to empower women, promote their works, expand their horizon, provide recognize and award their works and further mentor and inspire other women to venture into Agribusiness. It is expected to move to a different region every year, so all women can embrace and leverage on the platform.
The Gold in the Soil Awards also seeks to recognize pioneers, trailblazers, and the women who push the boundaries along the value chain.