Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana (PFAG), has inaugurated fertilizer security watchdog committees in all border towns across the country to help curb the menace of smuggling the commodity across neighboring countries. The fertilizer watchdog committees will monitor the movement of subsidized fertilizers across neighboring countries and report such perpetrators to the security agencies for arrest and prosecution.
Speaking at the National launch of the project “2017 PFAG fertilizer Watch Dogs” on Friday (28th April,2017) at the Paga border in the Upper East Region, Programme Coordinator of PFAG, Ms. Victoria Adongo, said the move was to help protect the tax payer’s money and compliment government’s efforts of making subsidized fertilizer accessible to small holder farmers.
“The PFAG envisions fertilizer smuggling this year as has been the case when fertilizer prices in Ghana are lower than that of neighboring countries coupled with price differences between open market and subsidized fertilizer.” It is in this regard that the PFAG has identified volunteers in all border towns in the three regions of the North where fertilizer smuggling is pervasive to support the security agencies with relevant information to effect the arrest of smugglers” Madam Adongo added. She indicated that, the various watch dog committees will receive comprehensive orientation by the security agencies to effectively discharge their duties. She continued that Ghanaian farmers resident in neighboring countries will be issued special kits by their district fertilizer desk officers for easy movement of fertilizer across the borders.
The Navrongo Crime officer, ASP Issahaku Adjei, and the Paga CEPS Commander Emmanuel Lawson, pledged their support and commitment to the fight against fertilizer smuggling in the area, and impressed on committee members to provide accurate and timely information.
Deputy Upper East Regional Minister, Frank Fuseini Adongo, reiterated government’s commitment in making agric viable to all farmers with the 50 percent fertilizer subsidy and other inputs under the planting for food and Jobs project.He urged the farmers to police the movement of the fertilizers to their benefit, and called on farmers to take advantage of the initiative to make Ghana a food sufficient country and a net exporter of many food stuff.