The Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, has thrown water on allegations by the Volta Regional chapter of NDC that there’s a widespread shortage of fertilizer in the region.
In a news release issued by the NDC in the Volta Region Monday morning, they stated emphatically that there is a shortage of fertilizers in the Volta Region after a thorough investigation of complaints by farmers in almost all districts and municipalities within the region.
They alleged that the farmers in the Volta Region are finding it difficult to get fertilizers such as NPK, Sulphate of Ammonia, and Urea to facilitate their farming activities.
They added that the situation is worse within the Anloga, South Tongu, Agotime-Ziope, Adaklu Districts, and Keta, Ketu South, and Ketu North Municipalities within the Region.
But reacting to the allegation during a working visit to the Volta Region Monday morning, the Agriculture Minister gainsaid the claims contained in the statement asking the public to treat it with the contempt it deserves.
He said it is wholly untrue that farmers in the Volta Region are having inadequate fertilizers like the NDC wants to portray.
“It is important that this kind of propaganda is killed off with data. So if you give data which goes with last year and this year,” he said.
“We have seen the very slow response that farmers in the Volta Region gave to Planting for Food and Jobs in the first 3 years”.
“In terms of beneficiaries and challenges fertilizers saw in the first 2- 3 years, we were struggling here and we were having all kinds of reports in Accra to the effect that the extension officers were not up to the job and they were not promoting their idea, so, fertilizers were being kept in warehouses and not being distributed,” Dr. Afriyie Akoto said.
“The last two years you have seen a very sharp increase in the number of beneficiaries and then the quantities of fertilizers and seeds that have been distributed and that has reflected in the production”.
“…we should be showcasing what we have done to please the farmers of Volta [Region] that, in spite of all the negative propaganda which started at the beginning of Planting for Food and Jobs, now they have come to the realization that it is beneficial to them and they should be able to go beyond the political propaganda and also believe it”.
Dr. Afriyie Akoto further indicated that the government is still supporting farmers across the country with fertilizers.
By: Ernestina Afake | Originalfmon;line.com | Ghana