Dr. David Anambam, the Asante-Akim South Municipal Director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) has expressed worry over the slow pace at which farmers who were supplied with inputs under the Planting for Food and Jobs Programme were paying back the money.
He said less than 100 out of 1,309 farmers who received the inputs after depositing half of the cost had made the second payment.
He disclosed that the seeds and fertilizers issued to the farmers last year amounted to GHC 121,029.00 out of which GHC 63, 469.50, representing 52.44 per cent had been recovered leaving GHC 57,55950 outstanding.
Dr Anambam who was speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at Juaso, said 50 per cent of the amount recovered was even the initial payment made by the farmers before they were given the inputs, adding that only GHC 4,972.00 had been received after the harvest.
He said the programme was in the best interest of farmers and must not be abused, adding that there were indications that beneficiary farmers had bumper harvest last year and encouraged the defaulting farmers to settle their debts in order to continue to enjoy more support.
The MoFA Director stated that inputs supplied under the programme was not only moderate in price but also of high quality that guaranteed higher yields.
Meanwhile some farmers that the GNA interacted with blamed government for their inability to pay their debt, arguing that they were promised a ready market for their farm produce.
They said they were willing to pay the debt provided their produce were purchased as promised by government prior to the implementation of the programme.