A mixed crop farmer at Akorley in the Yilo Krobo Municipality of the Eastern Region, Mr. Tetteh Kwashie has admonished government to, despite the massive reductions in the prices of fertilizer products, further reduce the prices of the products to serve the interest of the country’s poor farmers.
He said though government earlier this year slashed fertilizer prices by close to fifty percent, further reductions or even giving out fertilizer products for free would go a long way in assisting farmers.
Government in April this year announced that it has reduced the prices of fertilizer by fifty percent.
This according to government is to motivate farmers to increase crop yields and also pave way for more exports.
The Ministry of Food and Agriculture revealed that the price of compound fertilizer (NPK) which was GH¢85 in 2016, is now selling at GH¢ 57.50 pesewas.
The Ministry also revealed that the price of urea is currently selling at GH¢47.50 pesewas instead of the GH¢80 it was previously been sold at.
Mr. Kwashie who was speaking in an interview with Captain Adabugar on Tuesday during the Akuafo Sesen segment of the morning show accused government of “only paying ill attention to the challenges that the farmers are going through.”
To him, government must prioritize the agric sector if it actually recognizes the significant role it plays in the country.
“If indeed government is really committed to developing agriculture and move it to the highest level then farmers are the main stakeholders who ought to be prioritized,” he said.
While expressing the difficulties they encountered as farmers in accessing credit facilities, Mr. Kwashie lamented that farmers sometimes lost monies acquired from the financial institutions to the outbreak of diseases.
“We find it very difficult as farmers to access credit facilities from financial institutions to invest into our farming activities. Sometimes, we lose our monies including what we borrow from the banks due to the disease outbreaks such as the bacterial black spot that has destroyed our mango farms this year and leaving us with nothing,” he said.
Mr. Kwashie was concerned that though they used all chemicals recommended by the extension officers that have visited them, the problem still remained.
He therefore urged government to help the “poor farmers” who suffer to feed the nation, arguing that fertilizer and other farm inputs should be supplied free of charge to support the farmers.
Source; Prince Paul Amuzufirstname.lastname@example.org