Some farmers at Bu in the Nandom Municipality have expressed some disquiet about the shortage of subsidised fertilizers under the Planting for Food and Jobs in the Municipality earlier this year. The farmers say that the shortage occurred at a critical time of the plant growth cycle.
One of the farmers, Paulinus Daber, who spoke to GBC’s Mark Smith said the shortage caused delays in the application of the fertilizers. Mr Daber expressed worry that his crops would not be able to bear as much produce as it should have because of the delay.
Bu is one of the many communities in the Nandom Municipality known for the cultivation of maize, sorghum, millet and cowpea. Farmers in the community have taken advantage of government’s Planting for Food and Jobs program to acquire subsidized inputs for their farms.
The Farmers who spoke to the GBC praised government for the initiative. They however opined that there were aspects of the program that have been poorly implemented.
A farmer, Paulinus Daber said aspects like encouraging more women into agriculture, managing postharvest losses and e-marketing have not been properly executed. Even more worrying according to Mr Daber is the distribution of fertilizers.
“What I know about the Planting for Food and Jobs is government subsidizing some farm inputs but even with that not everyone can access them. When you go to Nandom town, there was period that farmers could not get fertilizers to buy.
It [fertilizer] will come but you will not get some to buy and you would wonder where it has passed,” he narrated.
Mr Daber said despite the advantages of the PFJ, some youth in the Nandom area are still unable to take advantage of the program because of issues with acquisition of lands.
The Nandom Municipal Director of Agriculture, Gaeten Baligi, however, denied reports of the shortage of fertilizers in the Nandom Municipality.
He said throughout the planting season, fertilizers were available at all the appropriate places.
Mr Baligi said even at the end of the planting season, fertilizers are still available.
Mr Baligi encouraged more farmers to subscribe to government’s Planting for Food and Jobs program.
Story filed by Mark Smith.