Rural women in Ghana say despite their key role in the agricultural sector, they have been sidelined in the implantation of certain government policies.
Their concern is coming at a time rural women across Africa are being empowered to remain in agriculture so as to secure food for the future. The Africa Lead project is aimed at building capacity for agricultural transformation in Africa with funds from the USAID.
With offices in Western and Eastern Africa, the initiative supported by the Africa Union and the Comprehensive Agricultural Development Program works to feed the future. As part of the project, over five thousand rural women in northern Ghana have been empowered to spearhead change in agriculture to reduce poverty and hunger in the country.
The step is among other things to stem out rural-urban migration for greener pasture. “The whole idea is to raise women champions who will go back to their various communities to empower others” Eunice Adofo Boanya, communications officer for Africa Lead said.
She emphasized, “We trained one woman from the north who have trained 53 other champions who also have trained 5000 women to bring back girls who have come down to the south to be ‘kayayes’ to the north”. Africa Lead however urges rural women to invest in the education of their girl child to get the requisite knowledge for large scale food production.
At the 68th UN general assembly, the UN declared 2016 as an international year of pulses which the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN have assured supporting rural women in Ghana for pulse production.
But leader of rural women in middle zone, Ghana, Gladys Adusah claims little attention is paid to them in the country. “All the tractors were given to the men, some of which we doubt if they are farmers. Mechanization and loan services do not cover rural women”.
She stressed that “Government notices us as food producers for the nation, so they should acknowledge our efforts else it will affect food security if rural women keep migrating to the cities” October 15 was celebrated at Assin Nyankumasi in the Central Region to mark International Day of Rural Women in Ghana.