Prof. Walter Sandow Alhassan, former Director-General at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, CSIR, Ghana and OFAB Ghana Chapter Programming Committee member, has said Ghana’s agriculture has good moments in relation to the seed sector in recognising its importance for a vibrant agricultural sector.
However, he intimated that, most farmers in the country are currently into the traditional farmer-saved seeds, and it is estimated that, only 5% of these farmers uses certified seeds where less than 20% of the seeds are certified.
“The National Seed Plan is encouraging a private sector-led seed industry that will benefit from a Public-Private-Partnership(PPP). If the challenges of the seed value chain are addressed and the Planting for Food and Jobs creates the expected demand pull for quality seed, we can see a vibrant seed industry that will benefit further from an accelerated pace of plant variety” he emphasized.
Prof. Alhassan, therefore challenged the media to up their role in creating the necessary awareness in the farmer for the new technology and for its use.
He was speaking at official launch of the Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology OFAB Ghana Chapter’s 2018 Media Awards dubbed, “Exemplary Journalism, Credible Science Reporting and better Public Understanding of Science Technology and Innovation.”
This year’s award is aims at recognizing exemplary journalism that stimulates best practices in the adoption of agricultural technologies, particularly agricultural biotechnology.
Mr. Roland Affail Monney, President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), lauded OFAB and its Organizers for such award scheme which will help deepen professionalism of journalists in the country.
Calling on the Organizers for more of such award schemes and the expansion of packages for winners, he charged the media to submit stories for entry and as well as delve more into researching the science and technology areas, which will help them to deliver accurate reportage.
According to the Organizers, deadline for all entry is on 30th June, 2018. The categories are the Print/Online, Radio and Television, whereas considered stories for the awards span between June 2017 to June 2018. The overall winners also have the advantage of competing with other winners from other African countries.