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Regional News of Saturday, 5 November 2016

Source: kapital971.com

Asante Akyem North MP calls for drastic measures to deal with Fulani menace

On the occasion of the National Farmers’ Day, the Member of Parliament for Asante Akyem North Constituency, Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang is calling for a definite and sustainable approaches to dealing with the disturbing Fulani canker.

In his Farmer’ Day message, the MP in whose constituency Agogo whose farmers have been terrorized by Fulani nomads for years is situated lamented the situation saying it contributed to “the poverty levels through loss of income generating avenues and rising unemployment levels.”

He continued that for the fear of being attacked, “farmers can’t have access to their farm lands”, adding that “these callous herdsmen don’t care about investment made but direct their cattle to graze on farmers plantations, molesting and harassing farmers who are bold to face them. These plight of such farmers can’t be ignored on this special day.”
Below is his full Farmers’ Day message;

ON THE OCCASION OF FARMERS’ DAY

It is a special honour to salute my colleague farmers on the occasion of celebrating Farmers’ Day.

Although our farmers deserve to be remembered and honored, we should never forget their plight.

Despite stakeholders vast investment in land and human resources in the farming sector, Ghana’s share in global production keeps declining.

Agricultural growth in Ghana has slumped to 2.3% in 2015. The plight of the Ghanaian farmer, calls for sustainable solutions.

The Fulani cattle rearers menace is of grave concern to farmers at certain parts of our country. Farmers can’t have access to their farm lands for the fear of being shot or threatened by the cattle rearers.

These callous herdsmen don’t care about investment made but direct their cattle to graze on farmers plantations, molesting and harassing farmers who are bold to face them. These plight of such farmers can’t be ignored on this special day.

As a farmer myself, I’m disturbed that is why I’m calling for definite and sustainable approaches to address this worrying trend that is contributing to the poverty levels through loss of income generating avenues and rising unemployment levels.

Many factors keep threatening the production and low returns from the farming sector and stakeholders must take pragmatic measures to save the situation.

There is the need to review the low share of the final product value that accrues to farmers. I’m pleading with stakeholders in the value and supply chain, such as associations, traders, exporters, the government, and trans-national farm produce processing corporations who hold the negotiating capacity and have the ability to influence prices to advocate for the interest of the farmers.

Although significant efforts have been invested in strengthening farmer associations which protects farmers from market volatility, there is the need to review the institutional arrangements and policy framework in the food supply chain.

Most Ghanaian farmers lack access to extension services, technology, finance and investment capital to upgrade their operations through important agricultural practices such as intensification and fertilization.

I therefore propose that solutions to boost the sector be drawn from looking at value addition activities in Ghana and respect for intellectual property so as increase returns to crops and animal production in farming communities.

Although women undertake the majority of vital maintenance and harvesting work on our farms, they remain disadvantaged in the industry and tend to have little control over the harvest proceeds.

I will therefore, plead with stakeholders to train women and provide them with adequate information that advances their opportunity to contribute to the decision-making processes that affect them and their families.

To our Cherished Farmers,
I say Ayekoo
Long Live Farmers
Long Live Asante Akyem North
Long Live Ghana

Signed:

Hon. Kwadwo Baah Agyemang
MP, Asante Akyem North