Accra, Ghana; February 7, 2019:
The Executive Director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA), Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo has during a stakeholder consultation meeting on the Framework of FARA Headquarter Agreement, lauded the Government and people of Ghana for hosting FARA and for providing it with the required enablement over the past fifteen years.
The one-day workshop convened at the instance of the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology & Innovation (MESTI) brought together senior officials from the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Monitoring & Evaluation, Ministry of Works and Housing, Attorney General & Ministry of Justice, Farmer Associations, Extension Services (public and private), Deans from the foremost universities of Ghana, FAO, Researchers, former Director Generals of Research among others, to solicit their input into the framework of the headquarter agreement leading to its ratification by the Parliament of Ghana as well as create awareness on FARA’s activities in Ghana and Africa.
Dr. Yemi Akinbamijo expressed FARA’s appreciation to all stakeholders for their unflinching support since its inception and when it was weaned off the FAO. “We have been greatly encouraged and the burden have been tremendously lightened through thick and thin”. He reiterated FARA’s role as an international organization created by a broad spectrum of stakeholder groups with keen interests in Africa’s agriculture. FARA was established to be the apex organization for coordination of agricultural research for development and therefore functions as the de facto continental think tank and as the technical arm for agricultural science, technology and Innovation to the Africa Union Commission and its agencies. “Today, with your support, FARA has become the proverbial mustard tree that started off as a small insignificant seed but that had been nurtured into a full-fledged tree where birds from all nations have docked their nests and men from all tribes and tongues take their repose in its shadows”.
The Headquarters Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Ghana (GoG) and the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) was signed in October 14, 2003. This Agreement was signed by the Government of Ghana by the then Honourable Minister for Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo, now president of the Republic.
The GoG is hosting FARA under MESTI which is the sector that provide policy coordination in the country. By the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana, the Headquarters Agreement should be ratified by the Parliament of Ghana following the signing.
The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation (MESTI) is the supervising Government Institution that oversees the activities of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA). The MESTI in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and the Attorney-General’s Department is working to present the Headquarters Agreement to Cabinet and Parliament for ratification.
Participants took turns to share their experiences and solidarity with FARA over the years and encouraged responsible ministries to accelerate processes towards the ratification of the FARA Headquarter Agreement.