The Upper West Regional Minister Alhaji Alhassan Sulemana has described as very satisfactory, the recovery of debts owed the State by farmers under the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) programme in the region.
He said with an average of about 65 percent of debts recovered from farmers, the region is well positioned to give more inputs since they are assured of repayment of credit facilities by farmers.
“65 percent is the average for the region and I would say it is not even satisfactory, but very satisfactory because some districts in the region are having a recovery rate of about 85 percent with the minimum about 55 percent,” he said.
Alhaji Sulemana disclosed that government sanctioned an audit into the activities of the various Municipal and District Chief Executives along with their Directors of Agriculture to ensure that all the inputs were put to judicious use.
“The government has commissioned an auditing to take place in respect with what we have done with all the materials supplied to the region in terms of the plating for food and jobs,” he explained.
Interacting with the media during the inspection of a one-thousand-metric-tonne capacity warehouse at Bulenga in the Wa East District, the Minister said the completed report would be made available to the public to ensure transparency and accountability on the part of government.
The Minister however, cautioned all defaulting farmers in the various district to settle their debts to ensure the continuance of the program.
The Upper West Regional Director of MOFA, Emmanuel Sasu Yeboah said efforts are being made to ensure that farmers pay back the inputs they took under the PFJ Programme.
He explained that things have improved from 2017 through to 2018 and that MOFA is “talking to farmers and they are paying. A district like Lawra has recovered about 89 percent of their debt which is encouraging.”
Mr. Sasu Yeboah was however, unhappy with the farmers who had not paid yet and encouraged them to make efforts to settle their debts.
Story by Mark Smith