Government has set up a task force to tackle chemical contamination of fish in the country.
The task force, which is under the Ministry of Fisheries and Aqua Culture Development is to curb illegal fishing in the country?s territorial waters, which the European Union (EU) recently raised concerns about.
Vice President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur announced this at the National Best Farmers Award Ceremony held in Sogakofe in the Volta Region.
“Some people resort to illegal fishing practices by using chemicals, unapproved net sizes that have a negative impact on fisheries and aqua culture development”, he noted.
According to him, the ministry of fisheries and aqua culture development has taken steps to curb the use of unapproved practices by “educating the stakeholders and also offering test kits to facilitate detection of chemical contamination in fish”.
He therefore expressed hope that with the establishment of the fisheries enforcement unit, the integrity of fishing activities will be guarded carefully to ensure that the fish catch from Ghana territorial waters is wholesome.
The enforcement units are expected to monitor, control and provide surveillance of all fishing operations within Ghana’s territorial waters, the?Vice President intimated.
Meanwhile, a farmer from the Kasena Nankana District of the Upper East Region, Alhaji Awudu Karim,? was adjudged this year’s national best farmer.
In the Upper West Region, the ceremony took place in Kpongu and Joy News’ Upper West Correspondent, Rafiq Salam witnessed the event and reported that the ceremony was a colourful one that brought together traditional rulers, departmental heads, religious leaders and some women groups.
The Wa Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), ?Issahaku Nuhu-Putiaha?, expressed worry about the loss incurred by farmers during post harvest period?as he assured that government’s plans to rectify the situation are far advanced.
“Study shows that along the production chain, about 30% of cereals and up to 20% to 50% of fresh fruits and vegetable are lost during post harvest loss management practices in the municipality.
“The government of the NDC is poised at reducing these?appalling situation and losses after harvest”, the MCE indicated.
According to him, government has through the ministry of food and agriculture rolled out some interventions such as fertilizer subsidy programme, human security programme among many others to address the situation.
The Member of Parliament (MP) for Wa central and Minister?of State at the Presidency in charge of public?private partnership, Alhaji Rashid Hassan Pelpuo, who was the guest speaker, called on farmers not to only produce for subsistence but go beyond sustainable farming and produce more than enough to sell.
According to him, there is the need for the country to grow out of subsistence farming and produce much more to effect a change in the economy of the country. This he noted “must begin from the community”.
A-45-year-old father of 8 children, Naa Adama Yahaya won the overall best farmer in the municipality. For his prize, he took away, a grinding mill, motor bike, sprayer, wellington boot, wall clock, radio cassette player and a certificate.
He appealed to the government to construct dams for the people, which will enable them?engage in dry season gardening.