Placing farmers at the core of Development Effort is Key to Achieving Food Security


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As Africa races against time to meet the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030 and the Malabo Commitment to end hunger by 2025, the continent faces formidable challenges aggravated by climate change, inflation, and regional conflicts. The urgency to re-evaluate financing mechanisms is increasingly recognized, with a growing emphasis on mobilizing domestic resources and exploring innovative financing solutions to bolster agricultural development.

In an event at the 10th African Regional Forum on Sustainable Development (ARFSD) held in Addis Ababa, a clarion call has been issued to policymakers to centre their policies around the needs of farmers and enhance access to funding in the agricultural sector.

The imperative to empower farmers and provide them with adequate financial resources is underscored as essential steps towards eradicating hunger, achieving food security, sustainable development, and realizing the broader objectives of the African Union Agenda 2063.

During a session themed ” Harnessing the potential of innovative financing for reinforcing CAADP implementation towards Africa free of hunger and sustainable, resilient agri-food systems,” Mr. Godfrey Bahiigwa, Director of the Sustainable Environment and Blue Economy Directorate at the African Union Commission, emphasized the critical role of farmers in driving progress and development in Africa.

The Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), a cornerstone initiative of Agenda 2063, outlines ambitious targets for transforming African agriculture by 2025, including the commitment of African governments to allocate at least 10% of national budgets to agriculture and rural development. However, the participants at ARFSD stressed that there is a pressing need for concrete action to translate these commitments into tangible outcomes on the ground.

Private sector engagement is identified as critical in driving investments and innovation in Africa’s agri-food and nutrition sector, offering critical resources and expertise to address the complex challenges facing the agricultural landscape. “By fostering collaborative efforts and forging strategic partnerships, stakeholders can amplify the impact of CAADP, fortifying Africa’s agricultural systems and advancing the goal of food security across the continent”, said Mr Menghestab Haile, Regional Director for Southern Africa, WFP

Participants at the meeting echoed the sentiment that Africa stands at a transformative moment in its development trajectory, where innovative financing mechanisms hold the key to unlocking the vast agricultural potential of the continent. By placing farmers at the centre of development efforts and enhancing access to funding, Africa can pave the way for a better future for all its people.