The Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) has rolled out implementation guidelines to ensure efficient distribution of subsidized fertilizer and improved seeds to farmers under the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJs) programme.
Mr Francis Ennor, the Upper East Regional Director of the Department of Agriculture, said this at a sensitization forum organized by the Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana (PFAG) with funding support from the International Budget Partnership.
Mr Ennor said the subsidized improved seeds and fertilizer programme was an initiative under the government’s PFJs policy to support smallholder farmers to buy adequate farm inputs.
He said the guidelines would help curtail smuggling, intensify quality control and ensure that well-deserved farmers were benefitting from the programme.
As part of the implementation guidelines, seeds and fertilizers to be sold under the 2021 PFJs would be packaged in sacks with PFJs logo and inscriptions.
“Participating companies will furnish MoFA with purchasing agreements from other companies must at all times invite MoFA to take stock of the inputs before distribution.”
Mr Ennor said copies of consignments’ waybills would be endorsed by Regional Ministers but where the destination of a consignment was not the regional capital, the waybill would be endorsed by the Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives (MMDCEs).
He said distributors and retailers would liaise with officials of National Builders Corps (NABCO) under the supervision of MMDCEs to distribute the seeds and fertilizers to retail points.”
“NABCO officials through the use of daily records sheets would also supervise and record quantities of seeds and fertilizer being sold to farmers.”
Dr Charles Kwowe Nyaaba, the Head of Programmes and Advocacy, PFAG, commended the government for improving the implementation of the fertilizer subsidy programme.
Dr Nyaaba said although the programme supported many farmers last year, there is a need for government to increase the subsidy rate to allow farmers to increase production.
He said smuggling remains an impediment to the successful implementation of the programme and called on the government to put in measures to combat it.