- Five key players in the agric value chain have slammed the sector minister for making 'appalling' comments about the sector during a recent interview.
- The group issued a statement criticising the minister for denouncing credible reports that capture challenges with the sector.
- They also slammed the minister for saying that his wife has not told him that food prices have increased on the market.
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Key players in the agriculture sector have released a joint statement to slam Food and Agriculture Minister, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, for making dishonest and misleading utterances during a recent interview.
The Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana (PFAG), Chamber of Agribusiness Ghana (CAG), the General Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU), the Rice Millers Association of Ghana (RMAG), and Food Sovereignty Ghana (FSG) say they are “appalled and disappointed” by comments by the Minister during an interview on the Citi Breakfast Show on Wednesday, March 16, 2022.
In a press statement sighted by YEN.com.gh, the players in the agric value chain accused the minister for providing evasive and unaccountable responses about the sector that clearly “demonstrated high levels of intolerance, and an outright disrespect to the living experiences of farmers and other actors in the sector.”
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“It is this approach to policy making in the sector which has largely negated any serious results (if possible) from major interventions in the sector over the past five years and frankly not necessary in a sector as critical as agriculture with several stakeholders,” the group said in the joint statement.
First, they accused Dr Afriyie Akoto of denying evidence of current high levels of food inflation and Ghana’s deteriorating state of food security.
They said he was instead insisting that the reports and data referenced by the journalists during the interview were inaccurate and unreliable.
The group said it is unfortunate that Mr Afriyie Akoto failed to back his claims that those reports were unreliable without providing the reliable data.
The group said the peak of the minister’s unprofessional utterances during the interview on Wednesday morning was when he blurted out that “my wife has not indicated to me food prices have increased” in response to a question about food inflation.
“How inconsiderate and disrespectful to Ghanaians? We hope his responses this morning, and in previous comments such as the reference to his domestic experience is not a reflection of official government position on the developments in the sector. That will be an unfortunate situation!” the agric sector players said in the joint statement.
The group said there is a plethora of credible analyses and reports about the current food inflation in Ghana with some even suggesting “that the situation will get worse in the coming months due to existing weaknesses in our systems as well as global pressures.”
The five key players in the agric value chain in Ghana advised the minister that critical policy makers like the minister should not dismiss such reports to save face.
The have urged the minister to see the reports and analysis about the country's agric sector challenges as good feedback.
ECG To Cut Power To Finance Ministry, Other State Agencies Over Huge Debts
Up next for power disconnection as part of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG)’s operation to retrieve debts are the Ministry of Finance and a number of government agencies.
The Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) is also on the list for the impending power disconnection by the utility company.
ECG told Joy News on Monday, March 14, 2022, that Finance Ministry and EOCO alone owe a staggering GH¢421,038.02.
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