Sunday, August 28, 2011

Food Think Tank Inaugurated in Tamale

Francis Npong, Tamale
An Eleven – member Food for life Think Tank comprises researchers and agriculturists, climate change experts and environmental scientists has been inaugurated in Tamale as part of efforts to ensure that rural livelihoods which depended on agriculture is sustained and also to address the problems of food insecurity in the northern region.

The members of the think tank are experts drawn from the Savannah Agricultural Research institute (SARI), the University for Development Studies (UDS), Irrigation Development Authority (IDA), CARE International, Water Research Institute (WRI), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) among other organizations tasked to re-examine and reformulate strategies to help local farmers cop with the climatic changes.

The initiative is under the Ghana Developing Communities Association (GDCA) and the Friendship Groups in Denmark (GV) under its Empowerment for Life Programme (E4L,) an intervention aimed to meet the goal of food security, sustainable livelihoods and climate change resilience in northern Ghana.
food security and climate change which he described as most critical and challenging global issues today.

Inaugurating the group, the Northern Regional Minister Mr. Moses Bukari Mabengba lauded the GDCA and partners for initiating research think tank to re-examine and formulate strategies to support the region to achieve food security and better livelihoods.
He pointed out that sustainable development and food security could be achieved if stakeholders work around a common thematic area devoid of duplication, parallel focus and inefficiencies.
The minister urged the think tank to come out with concrete research findings and recommendations on 
Mr. Mabengba said the government recognized climate change as an obstacle to achieving the better Ghana agenda and would support any initiative such as the think tank towards finding innovative ways of building community resilience in tackling the situation in Ghana.
The Chairman of the GDCA Professor Abubakari Al-hassan said the formation of think tank is part of the efforts by the organization to deal with food insecurity and climate change.
He explained that though there were policies and interventions aimed to improve food security and sustainable livelihoods in northern Ghana, these interventions have not achieve much because of the uncoordinated and parallel focuses.
The problem he said could be tackled holistically if there were research findings to show the way hence the 
formation of the think tank to undertake research on food security and sustainable livelihoods.
He thanked GV, a Danish organization for the support and urged the group to come out with evidence base research that is implementable and achievable.
The 2007 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) indicated that climate change is likely to push developing nations back into extreme poverty; hunger and starvation, conflicts, diseases, massive immigration, destructive flooding among other things and proposed the adaptation and mitigation climate change models including protection of environment, reduction of greenhouse gases emissions, among other things.

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