Ghana as known to all manner of persons started from an agricultural regime. A regime that saw massive production of agricultural products and services which besides feeding the increasing population, fed most of Ghana’s agro-industries. Indeed, it is of no doubt that our economy made a massive improvement as the agricultural sector contributed the largest share of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the early 1980s.
Most of our second Cycle Institutions were keenly interested in grooming, nurturing and training agricultural science students to meet the market standards of not only the average Ghanaian industries but also that of international market standards.
Indeed. Many youth found joy in farming ranging from animal production ( including the fisheries ) and crop production through to marketing of these products because the sector agents technically referred to as the Agricultural Extension Agents (AEAs) were besides motivated and encouraged , also supervised to ensure that their objectives are measurably achieved .
But what do we see today ? . Modernity which should rather have enabled us modify our approach to our practices appears to rather be shying most of the youth away from agricultural sector because most persons having secured what we refer to as white-collar jobs after their education , tend to forget how their parents rode on the back of agriculture to educate them to actualise their dreams . It will surprise you to know that , most of these persons who instead of encouraging others to engage in farming to get to their level , rather tend to look mean on farmers having forgotten that their parents stood on the pillars of agriculture to see them through school .
Our students who find themselves in the second cycle institutions through to most of the tertiary Institutions of late , are seldom being mocked by their colleague students in other departments not because these mockery makers are ignorant , but because the impact of agriculture is not made relevant by persons in society for these children and adults to be abreast with the impact of agriculture on the life of the Ghanaian citizen . This among few challenges of the sector appears to be a stumbling block in bringing to light , the relevance of Farmers day in contemporary Ghana . Amidst these sector challenges as a country , the challenging question remains , “what is the way forward ..???”.
Can we accept our fault as a nation that the relationship that tightly existed between our well meaning Ghanaian farmers and the agro-based industries in our dear nation is ALMOST lost …??
As we celebrate this years farmers’ day , let us use this opportunity to chance upon reviving the seemingly lost value of the sector mostly farmers , just by means of modernity and as well bringing to light the relevance of agriculture science students in the socio-economic development of mother Ghana .
Doing this will go along way to make Ghana a hub of agricultural development and as well go a long way to develop a culture of respect for agricultural science students in our various institutions of agricultural discipline .
I also urge government officials and other workers in the agricultural sector , mostly the General Agricultural Agricultural Workers Union(GAWU) to use their offices as a channel of creating operative and agriculture-driven atmosphere for farmers and the sector industries in order to make the much talked-about one-district-one(1D1F) factory policy a reality whiles making Ghana a conducive atmosphere for agricultural operations as well .
…Written By :
OSCAR KOMLA BEDZRA
BACHELOR OF SCIENCE , AGRICULTURE SCIENCE
Imeediate Past Coordinating Secretary of the International Association of Students In Agriculture And Related Sciences (IAAS) – UEW CHAPTER
UNIVERSITY OF EDUCATION, WINNEBA (COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE EDUCATION) -LEVEL 400 .