The European Union (EU)-Ghana has donated 57 motorbikes worth over Gh₵800,000 to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture to support agricultural extension services in 14 districts of northern Ghana.
All the eleven districts and municipalities in the Upper West Region are benefiting.
The rest are the Babile Agricultural Research Centre in the Lawra Municipality, Sawla-Tuna-Kalba and North Gonja districts in the Savannah Region and Mamprugu Moagduri District in the North-East Region.
The support was under EU’s Resilience Against Climate Change project implemented by the German Agency for International Cooperation (GIZ), under the EU Ghana Agricultural Programme.
Mrs Paulina Rozycka, Head of the Infrastructure and Sustainable Development of the EU Delegation to Ghana, who handed over the motorbikes to the MoFA, acknowledged the crucial role extension services played in improving agricultural productivity.
She said the partnership could strengthen the agricultural sector by addressing the many challenges, including post-harvest loss.
Mrs Rozycka said transport was very important to support the daily work of the agricultural extension agents and expressed the hope that the motorbikes would help reach more farmers on a regular basis.
That would help disseminate timely best agricultural practices, including important knowledge on how to adapt to climate change, she said.
She commended MoFA for the continuous collaboration with the EU and its partners to improve agricultural production and promote the development of rural communities.
Alhaji Mohammed Hardi Tufeirua, the Deputy Minister of Agriculture in Charge of Livestock, received the motorbikes on behalf of the ministry.
He reiterated the need for quality extension service delivery to farmers, which forms a major component of agricultural management in Ghana, and said the government was working hard to improve it.
While commending the EU for the continuous support to agriculture, he said agriculture extension agents would be supported with the needed logistics to enhance their work.
Alhaji Tufeirua urged the regional and district directors of agriculture to ensure the motorbikes were put to good use to serve the intended purpose.
Madam Mavis Derigubah, the Wa East District Director of Agriculture, indicated that the motorbikes would help alleviate the challenges the extension agents faced as two to three used one motorbike, which affected their performance.
A release issued by the EU indicated that supporting extension delivery service had a direct impact on poverty reduction, food security and socio-economic development of the country.
“It reaffirms the European Union’s and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development’s common goal to promote sustainable agricultural wealth creation in Ghana,” it said.