Former Chief Executive Officer of Ghana National Health Insurance Authority, Mr. Sylvester Mensah has descended heavily on Minister for Foods and Agriculture, Hon. Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, over his response to Former President John Dramani Mahama’s comment on Government’s inability to supply fertilizers to private commercial farmers.
According to Former President John Mahama, Ghana is likely to experience food shortage in 2022 if the government does not put more funds into its Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) programme.
While justifying his assertion that the PFJ programme is a failure, the former President stated that many farmers including his own brother are yet to receive fertilisers promised by the Akufo-Addo government.
The Agric Minister responded by accusing former President John Mahama’s brother of scrounging government subsidised fertilisers targeted at smallholder farmers in the country.
Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto said that his brother is a commercial farmer, cultivating 300 acres and does not qualify to benefit from the fertiliser meant for the poor farmers.
Reacting to this, Mr. Sylvester Mensah noted that the response from the Agric Minister, who is dreaming of becoming President one day, is very backward and highly untenable.
According to Mr. Mensah, “the UK provides subsidy to small and large scale private commercial cattle farmers to ensure equity, uniformity in prices, as well as to encourage a lot more to enroll in cattle farming as full time employment that guarantees further employment to many.”
“One would have thought that the supposed policy of “Planting for food and JOBS” would see wisdom in extending fertilizers to commercial farmers to employ more hands,” he stated.