Government plans to launch a program dubbed “Planting for Jobs and Investments” a subsidiary of its flagship “Planting for Food and Jobs Policy” geared at creating jobs for the youth and also boosting revenue of local assemblies.
The programme is targeting about three to five million farmers in the cultivation of seven identified cash crops within the next four to ten years.
The crops includes cashew, shea nut, mango, rubber, oil palm, citrus plants and cocoa.
The programme will by jointly launched by the Ministry of Local government and Rural Development (MLGRD) and the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA).
Under the programme, Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDA’s) are to undertake agricultural project with a budget that would support 10,000 to 20,000 farmers to cultivate an average of 10 acres of the crops within the next four years.
The Deputy Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Collins Ntim, who disclosed this during a sensitization workshop in Bolgatanga in the Upper East Region, said, MMDAs would establish seed banks in electoral areas that would raise improved and high yielding variety seedlings approved for farmers in the districts.
The MMDAs will also recruit between 100 to 200 youth in every district, who would be trained to support farmers plant the seedlings.
Mr. Ntim said, beneficiary farmers will be biometrically registered and a GPS mapping be established to all farms to link up the private sector to establish the necessary value addition linkages.
He said, District centers for agriculture, commerce and Technology (DCACT) will be established in all assemblies to attract investment in Agro processing at the districts and establish district agriculture pension trust.
He reiterated that, all MMDAs by the end of September 2017 are to submit their project proposals and budgets to MLGRD for harmonization.
“This is a policy intervention for Ghanaians, there shouldn’t be any partisan consideration and all chief executives will be assessed based on their performance” Mr. Ntim added.
The forum featured MDCEs, coordinating directors, directors of agriculture, as well as other stakeholders to support the assemblies identify their potential cash crops.
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