Kamara Osman Faisal, GNA
Mion (NR), Aug. 30, GNA- the Catholic Relief
Services (CRS), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) operating in the Northern
Region has launched the ‘Re-greening Africa’ project in the Mion district to
ensure evergreen agriculture practices.
The five-year project (2017-2020) is aimed at
improving rural livelihoods; ensuring food security as well as promoting
resilience to climate change of 500,000 smallholder farmers in eight African
countries including Ghana.
The project dubbed, “Reversing Land
Degradation in Africa by Scaling-up Evergreen Agriculture ‘Re-greening Africa’
project intends to restore the essential ecosystem services such as improving
water soil fertility, erosion control, and enhancing water cycle buffering.
The ‘Re-greening Africa’ project is targeted
at 15,000 smallholder farmer beneficiaries within 150 communities in the Mion
district to cover an entire area of 30,000 hectares of land to enhance
evergreen agricultural practices.
The project is funded by the European Union
and implemented by World Vision in Bawku West and Garu Tempane districts as
well as CRS an implementing partner operating in the Mion district in the
Mr Mawuli Asigbee, Agriculture Programmes
Manager at CRS speaking at the launch underscored the need for stakeholders to
be involved in the information sharing process and to solicit support in
rolling out the project to achieve its intended purpose.
He explained that the project would reverse
outmoded farming practices as well as facilitating the incorporation of tree
planting and tree management in farming activities to ensure enabling
conditions for re-greening.
Mr Asigbee indicated that, unsustainable
farming practices including; slash and burn, bush fires, sand winning, charcoal
burning were the menaces contributing to the degradation of the environment of
which the project would end in the district.
Mr Iddrisu Abu, Northern Regional Director of
the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said traditional authorities should
lead as the frontliners at ensuring behavioural changes of community members
and enforcing laws to protect the environment.
He added that, Civil Society Organisations
(CSO’s) and NGOs needed to have clear communication strategies and engagement plans
with various stakeholders to ensure inclusiveness to adequately address
environmental and developmental challenges.
Mr Mohammed Hashim, the Mion District Chief
Executive (DCE) said government initiatives of the Planting for Food and Jobs
(PFJ) and Planting for Export (PE) focused primarily on enhancing food security
and contributing to carbon sequestration in the atmosphere.
He appealed to NGO’s to strengthen their
coordination of projects with government agencies to adequately address
challenges to bring a desire change especially, human activities that degraded
land leading to climate change.
Participating stakeholders included:
Traditional Authorities, Assembly members, EPA, Ghana National Fire Service
(GNFS), Forestry Commission, Mion District Agricultural Department, and the
Ghana Peasant Farmers Association.