General News of Monday, 31 July 2017
Food and Agriculture Minister Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto lied to parliament and Ghanaians in general when he said Fall Armyworm invasion has been defeated, Eric Opoku, Member of Parliament for Asunafo South, has said.
According to him, statistics and figures available contradict the Minister’s claim.
Dr Afriyie Akoto told Parliament on Thursday 27 July that: “Mr Speaker, I want to assure the nation that the Fall armyworm invasion has been totally defeated”.
According to him, the “situation which has been created by some people that the armyworm is consuming the Planting for Food and Jobs [programme], Mr Speaker, is not correct, it is wrong”.
But speaking in an interview with Chief Jerry Forson, host of Ghana Yensom on Accra 100.5FM on Monday July 31, Mr Opoku said: “We were all taken aback when the Minister made that claim because we all know the problem is existing. This is a dangerous claim to make because it has the propensity of driving away people who want to help deal with the problem because we claim it has been defeated.
“The farmers are even shocked and angered by this claim. If anybody tells you that the fall armyworms have been eradicated, then the person is lying.
“The figures and statistics don’t even support what he is telling us. In the first week of July, the Minister’s own deputy told Parliament that 14,000 hectares of farms had been completely destroyed, in May, it was 1,400 hectares but you realised that it shot up to in July.”