DEPARTMENT OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURE IN AHAFO REGION LAUNCHES PFJ PHASE II

The Department of Food and Agriculture in the Ahafo Region has launched the Phase Two (II) of the Planting for Food and Jobs at the Ahafo Regional Coordinating Council.

Mr Kingsford Nyame, Ahafo Regional Director for Food and Agriculture welcomed all participants into the meetings and briefed the house on how the planting for food and Jobs Phase I was implemented in April 2017 and its achievements so far.

He said during Phase I, the government did very well by providing fertilizers to achieve its course. He further highlighted that the major reason for the implementation of the PFJ 1 was to improve food security, reduce poverty and create employment opportunities, he emphasized.

Mr Kingsford further made the house understand that the implementation of the PFJ 1 was faced with some challenges. One of them was the shortage of fertilizers during the Russian-Ukraine War.

Mr. Isaac Kofi Amponsah, Regional Crops Officer also briefed the house on the PFJ 1.0 -Area under Cultivation.

He stated, the Planting for Food and Jobs initiative hinged on five thematic pillars which included; improved seed production and promotion, increased fertilizer usage and promotion for increased productivity, promoting and strengthening marketing linkages , improved Extension Services and E-fertilizer and Monitoring. Additionally Mr. Isaac made it clear about a few challenges of the PFJ phase I.

He stated the region had limited vegetable seeds under the PFJ Campaign. Again, the Covid-19 affected participation of farmers in meetings, demonstrations and other agricultural training, activities into adherence to Covid-19 protocol and restrictions, weak marketing linkages, late delivery of inputs by distributors and so forth. All the above challenges are being worked on, he emphasized.

Mr. Isaac finally in his presentation said, to achieve greater impact, there is the need to strengthen stakeholders engagement in the form of training and information sharing at all levels of implementations.

Mr. Dennis Danquah, Ahafo Regional Extension Officer, hammered on the PFJ phase II. He said, with the PFJ phase II, the Ministry of Food and Agriculture is replacing the subsidy system with the input credit system where aggregators will have access to credit guarantees to procure improved inputs for farmers on zero-interest credit terms.

Mr. Dennis finally highlighted that to participate in this initiative, one must be a Ghanaian with a valid Ghana Card, must have access to Land( litigation free), be engaged or willing to engage in any of the prioritized commodities and be recognized institution, he emphasized.

The key participants of the programme include; Mr. Kingsford Nyame, Ahafo Regional Director for Food and Agriculture, Mr. Isaac Kofi Amponsah, Regional Crops Officer, Mr. Fritz Mensah, Deputy Director AhRCC, Mr. Bernard Asiedu, Ahafo Regional Director NIA, Mr. Collins Osei Bonsu, NADMO Director, Mr. Asiedu Kwabena , National Security, Mr. Theophilus Nti-Antwi , Right to Information Officer AhRCC, Mr. Ron Obeng Kwarteng , Environmental Health AhRCC and other Departments and Units.

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