Black Stars’ 2-0 defeat by Uruguay yesterday saddened Ghanaians, but we had the 38th National Farmers’ Day celebration to ameliorate our sadness.
The country’s farmers and fishermen were honoured at the Jubilee Park in Koforidua, the Eastern Regional capital, Koforidua.
We believe that any talk about any year’s farmers’ day must not leave out its architects, so that they can be accorded the honours due them.
The PNDC administration, led by Flt Lt Jerry John Rawlings, established Farmers’ Day in 1985 to recognise the key role farmers and fishermen play in the economy, particularly the esteemed yields of farmers and fishermen in 1984 “to hoot at the famine of 1983”.
These people deserve tonnes of commendation for encouraging farming in a country where it is perceived to be for the poor, the aged and failures in other fields of endeavour.
Unfortunately, the system is such that other areas promise better prospects, with politics seeming to be the easiest avenue to make it.
Thus, most people in the country, particularly the youth, in spite of their knowledge and skills, wish to be in politics, eyeing political appointments.
This is why the Farmers’ Day brings some hopes for the development of the agriculture sector as some young people and even high-profile people are into farming and fishing now.
Today, we congratulate the award winners, particularly 43-year-old Nana Yaw SarpongSribour, the Overall National Best Farmer for 2022, Mr Seth AdjeiFosu, the first runner-up and Professor AkwasiAsabriAmeyaw, the second runner-up.
We wish to accord Prof Asabere-Ameyaw special honours for here is a retired Vice Chancellor of University of Education, Winneba, who could have decided to enjoy his retirement in all comforts but has decided to join others to feed the nation.
His case should encourage others who have already made it in life but have interest in the agriculture sector to come in and contribute their quota to its growth.
It is also interesting that some young people have refused to be discouraged by brazen remarks by some people like Kennedy Agyapong against agricultural activities, particularly farming, to the effect that farming would make them poor.
Last year, 44-year-old man, AlhajiMashudMuhammed won the Best National Farmer and this year a 43-year-old has done so; this is a message to the youth to begin to see the prospects in serious agricultural activity.
The truth is that Ghana can survive without much problems if the government can encourage agricultural activities, particularly crop farming, livestock and fishing, for yields that can make it self-sufficient in food.
That way, it can save itself the troubles of food imports.
Every nation has to leverage its resources to its maximum advantage but Ghana has missed it in that sense.
In spite of their other resources, the Russian Federation and Ukraine, for instance, are said to be net exporters of agricultural products and are leading suppliers of foodstuffs and fertilizers to global markets.
Today, the two are at war and the whole world is in food crisis.
Ghana need to learn from the agricultural exploits of Ukraine and Russia to, at least, feed its people.