Government of Ghana Commits to Implement the Science Agenda for Agriculture in Africa (S3A)

JOINT Press Release: Accra, Ghana, November 14, 2018

The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology & Innovation (MESTI), The Ministry of Food & Agriculture (MoFA) and The Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa(FARA) on the Signing of the Ghana Science Agenda for Agriculture in Africa (S3A) Commitment Letter at MESTI Conference Room

In 2003, The African Union Heads of State and Government adopted the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) in Maputo. The goal of CAADP is to aid in agricultural-led development that eliminate hunger, reduce poverty and achieve food security in Africa. In June 2014, AU leaders reaffirmed their commitment to CAADP by adopting the Malabo Declaration on Accelerating Agricultural Growth and Transformation in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, and for the first time, agreed 7 concrete commitments to be monitored by clearly defined targets for agricultural -led economic growth in Africa.

From left to Right: DR. OWUSU AFRIYIE AKOTO (Hon. Minister of Food & Agriculture), PROF. KWABENA FRIMPONG BOATENG (Hon. Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation) & DR. EPHRAIM MUKISIRA (FARA Board Chair)

During the same AU -Heads of state summit in 2014, the Science Agenda for Agriculture was ratified as a framework within the context of the Accelerated Agricultural Growth Strategy for deepening the Application of Science as the quickest way to achieving many of the seven Malabo commitment especially on commitment three and  four on ending hunger and halving poverty by 2025. As the technical arm of the AUC, the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) was mandated to lead the implementation of the Science Agenda as a direct follow-on action to spur the implementation of CAADP after ten years of  strengthening planning and mutual accountability processes for agricultural development. The S3A is to ensure countries are set on a strong science-led and climate relevant economic growth trajectory that takes advantage of all relevant institutional and policy provisions that African countries could garner within the Continent but also leveraging other North-South and South-South partnerships.

 

The Science agenda framework therefore seeks to translate a number of the Malabo commitments and targets into implementable actions that can be implemented at national level.

The Science Agenda is a framework for deepening the application of Science for the transformation of Agriculture in Africa as a means of inclusive sustainable growth, shared prosperity and poverty reduction to attain the ‘Africa we Want’ as envisioned under the Agenda 2063. The S3A is geared towards sustaining CAADP momentum and delivers on the first AU Heads of State and Government clear targets on eliminating hunger, poverty, food insecurity etc. by 2025 in Malabo

The S3A’s vision is that “By 2030 Africa is food secure, a global scientific player, and the world’s breadbasket with the goal of doubling of public and private sector investment into agricultural research for development (AR4D) by 2020.

Ministers, Chief Directors at the Ministries, FARA Board Chair , FARA Executive Director and other Directors at FARA

The realization of the Science Agenda’s vision depends on effective domestication of this framework agenda into national strategies, investment plans and action plans given the uniqueness of the contexts, challenges, opportunities and priorities of countries. To ensure that the S3A is owned and driven by countries, a series of engagements at Sub regional and National level are being organised by FARA and its constituent Sub-regional Organisations that will help set up a facilitated process for deepening national engagements with S3A implementation by all African countries. The implementation is initiated by the country’s commitment to the agenda and has started in six countries; Rwanda, Malawi, Senegal, Benin, Egypt and Ghana. It is expected to be and scaling up to other countries.

The 2018 Africa Agriculture Transformation Scorecard by the African Union show that Ghana in on track in meeting four of the seven Malabo commitment especially re-commitment to CAADP, Halving Poverty, Boosting intra-African trade and enhancing Mutual Accountability.

However, Ghana is not on target on the commitments on enhancing investment financing in agriculture, ending hunger by 2025 and enhancing resilience to climate variability. These are targets that relate to actions under the Science Agenda.

FARA and Government of Ghana representatives as well as the media during during the signing ceremony

Under the leadership of the MESTI and MoFA and a number of stakeholders in Ghana, including Ministry of Finance, CSIR, UCC, UG, KNUST, the Private sector and Farmers based organisations, a National S3A team for Ghana has been instituted.  A roadmap has been drawn for the implementation of the S3A in Ghana. The signing ceremony is part of the roadmap. The commitment letter is being followed by country profiling and the development of an Investment Proposal identifying priority needs.

 

Signed

Board Chair    Executive Director     Hon. Minister             Hon. Minister

FARA                         FARA              MESTI                        MoFA