The planting food and jobs, according to the minister of Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, has gulped 157 million Ghana cedis. Out of this sum, GH¢24,963,981.00, was spent on seeds, whilst GH¢132,059,193.00 was spent on fertilizer and haulage.
For a policy that is without a blueprint, spending such an amount is very high.
In Ghana, we throw figures around as if it is nothing. Money, has no meaning to us, for as long as we have a justification for spending it.
Ghana’s economy for several years, has remained mono-cultural with cocoa as the main source of revenue, until we discovered oil and started commercial production.
Many experts, had warned Ghana, to avoid the Dutch disease, which had affected many countries with oil as the mainstay of the economy.
In economics, the Dutch disease is the apparent causal relationship between the increase in the economic development of a specific sector (for example natural resources) and a decline in other sectors (like the manufacturing sector or agriculture).
So it was welcome news when the Akufo-Addo, administration, immediately after assuming the reins of power introduced the planting for food and jobs.
Every segment of the Ghanaian society, more than ever supported the call to shift attention back to agriculture, which used to be the backbone of the economy.
However, we are compelled to point out that, despite the success the policy, we are told had achieved, prices of food items, especially tomato, has gone up.
The main reason why various policies, have continued to fail, is largely because of our inability to set achievable targets, and accept where we have failed.
We are of the view that, with the introduction of the policy, we are continue to eliminate seasonal crops. The excuse given by market women when you complain about the price of tomatoes is that, it is out of season.
Buying three pieces of tomatoes for five Ghana Cedis, does not indicate success of any policy.