The Member of Parliament for the Lambussie Constituency in the Upper West Region, Hon. Dr. Bright Yelviel BALIGI has made a passionate appeal to the government to support the youth in his constituency with the needed machinery in the agricultural sector to help expand food production and increase the incomes of small-holder farmers.
He made this known when he took his turn in explaining the government’s Budget Statement and Economic Policy for the year of our Lord 2021 presented before Parliament last week.
In his submission, he averred that by the geography and natural endowment of the Lambussie constituency, which shares a boundary with neighboring Burkina Faso, the country stands to gain substantially in economic fortunes if the government assists the youth with the needed agricultural machinery and equipment.
In his view, the global population is expected to increase to 9 billion by 2050, with youth (aged 15–24) accounting for about 14 percent of this total.
While the world’s youth cohort is expected to grow, employment and entrepreneurial opportunities for youth – particularly those living in developing countries’ economically stagnant rural areas – remain limited, poorly remunerated, and of low quality.
He described the 2021 budget statement as one that restores hope, comforts, confidence in the Ghanaian economy.
In recognition of the agricultural sector’s potential and the president’s resolve to attract educated youth into agriculture, this will serve as a source of livelihood for rural youth.
He posited that it makes economic sense if the government commits some resources to develop agrarian communities, especially that of his constituency where the youth are already imbued with the zeal and the zest to contribute to food production in the country.
He noted if the battle against poverty, hunger, and unemployment will be won, it must be in the agriculture sector”.
As an agrarian constituency, the primary occupation of most of the people is basically anchored on farming.
The above development notwithstanding, youth unemployment and difficulty in accessing farm inputs by most farmers are among the topical issues that stand tall as constraining factors in the people’s unrelenting and unwavering commitment to food production.
To this end he says with the necessary farm machinery in place, the constituency is likely to become the country’s food hub in the next few years.
Throwing more light on some key thematic areas of the budget, especially on agriculture, he says he is convinced that the budget comes with more hope to the good people of Ghana and that the President is deeply committed to seeing to the full implementation of the budget to alleviate the global economic challenges and the seemingly unending conundrum that we have been inundated with following the ravaging effect of the Covid-19 pandemic.