World Food Day: MOFA urges the citizenry to protect water sources

Water Bodies
Water Bodies

Mr Bryan Acheampong, Minister of Food and Agriculture ( MoFA), has urged the citizenry protect water sources in the country.

He said while the government continued to ensure availability of potable water to the populace, the people must desist from indiscriminate dumping of waste in water sources, open defecation and the wrong disposal of plastic and electronic waste.

He said this at the 43rd World Food Day observance and flag raising ceremony at the forecourt of the Ministry on the theme: “Water is life, Water is food, Leave no one behind”.

World Food Day is celebrated on October 16 every year to heighten public awareness of the problem of hunger in the world and highlight the need for collective action in ensuring food and nutrition goals for national development.

The focus is on water this year.
Mr Acheampong said the Ministry through the Tree Crop Development Programme, was salvaging lands that were heavily mined with non-food trees to reduce the effect of leaching of chemicals into underground water bodies and reduce the load within the food web.

He said: “The fight against illegal mining by government needs our unflinching support and we must be aware that it takes a very long time and funds to rid water of pollutants and its negative effective on humans, plants and animal health.”

“It is for these reasons that we must take drastic measures to cut down all negative human activities that could lead to the pollution and decimation of our streams, lagoons, rivers and dams,” he added.

Ms. Mavis Hawa Koomson, Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, noted that the sector had contributed significantly to achieving national food and nutritional security, saying: “For the year 2022, total domestic fish production stood at 657,272 metric tons with per capita consumption of 21.9 kilogram compared to that of ECOWAS average of 13 kilograms.”

She, however, noted that the fisheries from traditional sources mainly the sea and inland water bodies had been over exploited due to illegal unregulated fishing and climate change and the inability to properly manage waste, with plastics taking over water sources.
“Restoring the healthy condition of the water bodies collectively will result in rebuilding the fisheries resources and eventually increase fish production,” she said.

Mr Charles Abani, United Nations Resident Coordinator, said some 780 million people around the world were hungry with almost 50 million children at risk of death, yet funding for this year’s global humanitarian appeal stood at just 32 per cent.

He said: “The UN Secretary General finds this outrageous that a person dies of hunger every few seconds while the world food programme has been forced to cut its essential aid programmes halfway to the deadline of zero hunger by 2030.”

Mr Abani stressed that the crisis demanded actions first and foremost from governments, to champion the responsibility to make sure their people had enough to eat, however, many governments lacked the resources to do so hence international solidarity was essential.

Ms. Barbara Clemens, Country Director, World Food Programme (WFP), said her outfit was engaging in partnerships to ensure food and water security in Ghana.

Ms. Clemens said the strategic plan was to ensure that every Ghanaian was food and nutrition secured.

Development partners at the 43rd celebration pledged continuous support to the Ministry towards ensuring water and food security in the country.

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