Business News of Thursday, 8 February 2018
An Economist, Courage Boti, has advised government to correct all the wrongs in some of its social intervention programmes especially the Planting for Food and Jobs initiative.
Armyworm infestation as well as storage capacity are some of the challenges that confronted the planting for food and jobs policy.
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture recently announced that it has created about 745,000 jobs under the programme to help with a number of farming activities including the tilling of lands and the harvesting of crops.
However, some critics have argued that the number of jobs government claims to have created, were rather short-term ventures that would end after a few months.
Mr Boti believes measures should be put in place to address the challenges that confronted the policy and to help sustain it so that efforts of farmers will not be in vain.
In an interview with Class Business, he said: “They [Government] should correct some of the wrongs that happened in 2017. In the agricultural sector, you introduced Planting for Food and Jobs that is supposed to trigger higher productivity for at least the cereals, but you did that without making adequate provisions for things like pest invasion, without making adequate provision for warehouses to store some of the foods that will be produced so there were complains in the media that some farmers don’t know where to sell their goods.
“The storage capacity of the Ghana Buffer Stock is actually less than the quantities that are produced and they are now looking for spaces to store them. Going forward, government should be proactive. Once you anticipate that this programme will lead to increase in productivity, you must provide the market for storage for those things going forward so that there will not be lags leading to people’s efforts going to waste.”