May 22, 2024

The Techiman South Municipal Assembly, Department of Agriculture, has organized a municipal sensitization program dubbed “The Durbar” for all relevant stakeholders in the Agriculture industry.

The initiative aims to educate participants on the Planting for Food and Jobs Phase 2.0, highlighting its benefits, registration process, and the progress made by the department in enrolling farmers on the project.

The program, which took place at the Techiman Bonokyempem Hall, was attended by the Techiman South Municipal Coordinating Director, Mr Emmanuel Amoah, some departmental heads of the Techiman South Municipal Assembly, Assembly Members, the Director of the Techiman South Municipal Department of Agriculture, Mr Stephen Aidoo, Agriculture Extension Officers, staff and supporting staff of the department, Agriculture input dealers, farmers and a section of the media.

The Techiman South Municipal Assembly, Department of Agriculture, seeks to raise awareness about the opportunities and support available through the Planting for Foods and Job Phase 2.0 initiatives which aim to promote sustainable agriculture, increase food production, create employment opportunities and enhance the livelihoods of farmers in the municipality.

Farmers who will be enrolled on the PFJ 2.0 are expected to be provided with agro-inputs such seeds, weedicides, pesticides, fertilizers, based on credit in kind system, and provision of technical supports including many others hence the stakeholders’ sensitization program which addressed their concerns while providing guidance on the program enrolment and participation requirements.

The department seeks to foster collaboration, innovation, and inclusive growth in the agriculture value chain, contributing to food security, economic development, and environmental sustainability in the municipality.

Mr Stephen Aidoo, the Techiman South Municipal Director of Agriculture, in an interview with the media disclosed that, farmers in the municipality have been very corroborative and supportive to his Agriculture Extension Officers in the registration process.

According to him, although his outfit don’t have a specific target to meet so far as the PJF 2.0 is concerned, they however, have to meet a production target which is 50% of the national target.

“The registration process has so far been very smooth; the farmers have been very supportive and corroborative towards our Agriculture Extension Officers (AEO), our AEOs visit farmers and collect their bio data after which they visit their farms and pick the farm size using GPS coordinates.

“So far, the data we have collected shows that the process is going on well. We have been given a production target, which is to at least meet 50% of the national target but we don’t have a specific target as a municipality.” He disclosed.

According to him, the inputs will be provided to the farmers by an aggregator for Techiman municipal farmers who have been registered. Mr. Stephen Aidoo urged all farmers within the municipality to take advantage of the PFJ 2.0 by enrolling on the program.

On his part, the Techiman South Municipal Desk Officer for them Planting for Food and Jobs Phase 2.0, Mr. Martin Fosu, indicated that, government has partnership with aggregators who will be providing all relevant agriculture inputs to farmers who will be enrolled on the platform.

He explained that, the farmers will pay the inputs provided by the aggregators from their farm produce equivalent to the cost of the inputs. 

“Government has collaborated with some aggregators to procure inputs to farmers, the farmers will use their farm produce to pay for the inputs after harvesting and they will pay. But the process starts with the registration process as they will inform government and the aggregators’ decision on the number of fertilizer, seeds and other inputs needed. 

“This project is market driven because farmers have the luxury to sell their farm inputs to the aggregators that is after settling them with their farm inputs, this initiative is meant to tackle the issue of  marketing raised by farmers at the end of every farming season.” He explained

He disclosed that, this is a government project devoid of political affiliation and therefore encouraged on all farmers to enrol on the project and benefit from the Planting for Food and Jobs Phase 2.0.

On the issue of eligibility, Mr Fosu Martin said, “if you want to be part of this project you must first and foremost be 18years and above, you should have a farm land and most importantly, you must have a Ghana Card. Cocoa, cashew and other tree crops are not part of the commodities that will benefit from this program but farmers who cultivate commodities like maize, rice, sorghum, soybean, cassava, yam, plantain, tomato, pepper  broilers etc can benefit from the PFJ 2.0.

As a platform for information dissemination, networking, and partnership-building, the sensitization program hosted by the Techiman South Municipal Assembly, Department of Agriculture, highlights the importance of stakeholder engagement, community participation, and government support in advancing agricultural development, poverty reduction, and rural transformation in line with national food security goals.