Weeding as punishment affecting interest in agric

THE COMMON catchphrase -agriculture is the backbone of Ghana’s economy- has always been on the lips of major political players in the country.

But, the political will and commitment to fully resource and overhaul the sector to take its rightful place in economic development have been disappointing.

So sorry is Ghana’s situation that the country imports just anything-from rice to T-Rolls and even common toothpick when we are blessed with abundant arable land.

Our syllabi from the basic to the Senior High School level have not helped matters. Reading Agricultural Science has not been such as fanciful course. In fact, some agric science periods are meant for weeding which makes farming very unattractive to the young right from the basic level.

As the campaign to entice the youth to venture into agricultural activities gathers steam with government rolling out policies such as the ‘Planting for Food and Jobs,’ THE DAILY HERITAGE is of the opinion that the time to change the bad perception about agric science is now.

The Education Ministry and the Ghana Education Service should, together with stakeholders, fine-tune the agric syllabi and make the subject more revealing to attract and retain the youth into the sector.

There should also be focus on institutional, financial and technical innovations that attract the youth into all stages of the agricultural value chain.

This will require advocates pushing for open sharing of data and science applications in agriculture at national, regional and global levels. It also requires cultivating a culture where decisions are informed by evidence.

The good news is that the trend appears to be gradually changing with young folks developing interest and going into full time farming with support from some government agencies.

With high level of commitment, Ghana and indeed other African countries can transform agriculture and position the sector where it belongs.


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