Morkporkpor Anku, GNA
Accra, Aug 31, GNA – Dr Sagre Bambangi, a Deputy Minister of Agriculture in Charge of Crops, has acknowledged the immense contribution played by women in the agriculture value chain.
He said, “We cannot quantify the immense role women play and keep playing to improve on the sector.”
Dr Bambangi was speaking at the launch of Women in Food and Agriculture Conference and Expo (WOFAGRIC) and Gold in the Soil Awards in Accra.
The conference on the theme: “Women! Key Partners in Shaping Agribusiness,” seeks to bring together women interested in Agriculture, those already in agricultural institutions and women groups, who wanted to empower women, students and retailers.
It will also highlight the agro-economic opportunities to women and advertise the wonderful works women are doing in the sector.
He said as a country, “we have not paid enough attention to most of the problems and challenges in the sector, especially the needs of women in the sector.”
He said the Ministry of Agriculture recognised the role of women and had, therefore formulated programmes and policies to support them.
The Deputy Minister said in the area of credit repayment, women in the sector have proven to be more credible than their male counterpart even though they could pay.
Dr Bambangi said government had a policy to transform the sector through the use of machinery and equipment, hence, plan to access some equipment like the combine harvesters for women.
“The Ministry has some agreement to make machinery available for women,” he added.
Dr Zanator Rawlings, the Member of Parliament for Osu Klottey Constituency, said some of the issues women faced in the sector could be addressed when government and its agencies paid attention to the land tenure system.
She commended women in the agricultural value-chain for their immense contribution to the development of the economy.
“Gender Stream is something that we cannot ignore as a country and every Ministry Department and Agencies has a duty to address these challenges,” she added.
Ms Alberta Akyaa Akosa, Executive Director for Agrihouse Foundation said the conference, which was slated for Kumasi next year also aimed at using the conference as a vehicle to call on government and other policy makers to the low level of recognition being given to the role of women in agriculture.
She said, as part of the event there would be the ‘Agri hub’, where young female students with ideas on starting agribusiness would make presentations and have them shaped by industry giants.
She said on the Awards, three outstanding women, who have contributed significantly to the agribusiness sector would be recognised and awarded.
Mrs Paulina Addy, Director of Women in Agriculture Development, said the event also aimed to provide women farmers with the needed resources they need to enhance their knowledge of the agribusiness operations and learn the value of leadership in communities and cooperatives.