They till the land to provide both food and cash crops without which we would perish. Yet as the wretched of the land, they continue to bear the consequences of the bad governance iniquitous leaders continue to inflict upon

It is time to celebrate the toils of our farmers. As a date set aside to remember and salute them for their invaluable contribution towards the health of the nation, we feel ashamed for the hypocrisy and insincerity that underpin the annual activity.

For the first time since the commemoration started, a section of Ghanaian farmers have expressed their angst over the challenges they continue to countenance in a country where economic woes spawned by bad governance constitute a permanent feature of our landscape.

The Scholarship Scheme instituted for their children many years ago even before the Farmers? Day celebration was instituted, is now a shadow of its past as children/wards of the wealthy enjoy the facility to the detriment of the farmers engaged in the backbreaking toils on the farms.

For us, today is a day on which to sympathise with the Ghanaian farmers who as targets of bad politicians when elections are around the corner, are subjected to myriad promises of Manna from Heaven which never come anyway.

They are used and dumped by the same politicians who would mount the podium today to salute and address them with all the pretentions at their disposal.

At a time in the country?s history when the national health insurance scheme has been reduced to nothingness, farmers have to turn to alternative medical attention, bearing all the risks involved in the decision.

Even when so-called new products such as accessing loan facilities to enable them to purchase tractors to modernize their production methods are announced, these are hijacked with the connivance of politicians at the helm.

Helplessly, they fold their arms in despair as their entitlements are taken away from them by persons who though not farmers, have connections with operatives at the corridors of power.

When the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) and its agricultural production module was showcased amidst pomp and pageantry, farmers in the northern parts of the country smiled thinking that at last their prayers had been heard.

Unfortunately, their own people in positions of authority and mandated to manage the project ended up emptying the kitty with little to point at as achievements. The lot of farmers has not changed even as politicians continue to tell them stories about how they intend to improve their lot.

Today as the president or his representative speaks to them, they will be listening to recycled stuff about better days ahead which would hardly come under the present dispensation.

We salute our gallant farmers for their stoicism. Even as they witness our national resources being squandered by greedy politicians at the helm, they continue to till the land on mosquito-infested farms with water from water hyacinth-covered ponds to quench their thirst.

With the cost of agricultural inputs, utility and school fees, including medical care, out of their reach and in the face of a moribund national health insurance scheme, today?s speeches about better days are but rituals they can no longer contain. We salute our farmers and advise them to read the demeanour of politicians to winnow the liars from the sincere ones.


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