Farmers appeal to government to ban agro-chemicals importation

A group of rural farmers have appealed to government to ban the importation of agro-Chemicals to protect farmlands for sustainable agriculture to enhance the nation’s food security.

They complained continuous application of agro-chemicals were slowly “posing great danger to our health and well-being”.

The farmers expressed regret that the agro-chemicals were destroying soil nutrients and therefore rendering “our fertile lands bequeathed to us by our forefathers infertile for quality farm produce “.

Opanin Kwasi Tabiri, an 87-year-old farmer made the appeal on behalf of the farmers in an interview with Ghana News Agency after a rural farmers’ education forum on Friday at Esereso, a farming community near Adantia in the Sunyani West Municipality.

It was organised by the Environment and Agriculture Women Association of Ghana (EAWAG), a farmer-based women non-governmental organisation in the Municipality in collaboration with the Centre for Climate Change and Gender Studies (3CGS) of the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR).

The forum educated the farmers about climate change and the need for them to adopt innovative farm practices, organic farming for sustainable agriculture and sustainable environment.

The event, on the theme “Promoting Best Farming Practices that Conserve Biodiversity, Mitigates Climate Change and Promotes Environmental Sustainability” was funded by Global Green Grants Fund.

The other beneficiary farming communities are Wabirease, Tumiamayenko, Apprakukrom, Bofookrom and Abronye, all in the Municipality.

Opanin Tabiri said the ban on agro-chemicals on the market would compel food crop farmers to adopt the mulching method and application of organic fertilizers for food cultivation.

Madam Emilia Kyeremeh, the leader of EAWAG advised the farmers to practice shifting cultivation, mixed cropping, crop rotation, growing of cover crops, tree crop cultivation and avoid bush burning and deforestation on their farms to preserve their lands for sustainable agriculture in Ghana.

She said farmers must prevent blockage of water ways by human activities and practice mini water storage systems in their farms for irrigation purposes.

EAWAG, operating in the Bono, Bono East and Ahafo Regions was formed in 2014 with the broader objective of improving the economic well-being of rural women, promote sustainable environment through best farming practices and empower women to influence social, political and cultural decisions that affect women and their offspring in the society.