What you need to know about National Farmers' Day

“Farmers’ Day”, which began 30 years ago, was instituted by the Government in 1985 in recognition of the vital role farmers and fishers play in the economy.


As farmers prepare to go through the annual rituals of National Farmers Day celebration, have you ever bothered to find out the humble beginnings of the celebrations? brings you a historical background of the Farmers Day celebrations.


“Farmers’ Day”, which began 30 years ago, was instituted by the Government in 1985 in recognition of the vital role farmers and fishers play in the economy especially the highly commendable output of farmers and fishermen in 1984.


This was after the bad agricultural years of 1982 and 1983.

Between 1982 and 1984, the country suffered a serious drought which can never be compared to any in the country's history.

This was due to devastating bushfires in 1984, which reduced the land bare and dry, with very little green vegetation.

The development caused severe food shortage, as cocoa farms and food crops were destroyed. To make matters worse, more than one million Ghanaians in 1983, who travelled to Nigeria to seek greener pastures were chased out of Nigeria to return to their home country.

However, in 1984, Ghanaians had some sort of relief after the National Mobilisation Squads, Mobisquads for short, emerged to salvage the situation.


The Mobisquads cleared the farms and replanted the cocoa trees. They also constructed classroom blocks, roads, toilets and many others.

Thus, in 1984, the National Mobilisation Programme (NMP), under the chairmanship of Commodore Steve Obimpeh, and the Ghana Federation of Agricultural Co-operatives (GHAFACOOPS), under Togbe Sasraku, organised a programme to celebrate the gallant role of farmers in reviving the country's Agric sector through various activities which ended the famine and long drought.

That was how, in December of 1986, farmers from all over the country converged at Osino in the Eastern Region, to mark the first National Farmers’ Day celebrations, with Captain Kojo Tsikata (retd), member of the Provisional National Defence Council (PNDC), being the guest speaker.

The package to the first best farmer was made up of two Machetes, a pair of Wellington boots and a preset radio. Other farmers received honours from the state, including cutlasses, sacks, bicycles and boots.

But, that was not all. Later, the PNDC government believed it will be prudent to set aside a special day for farmers and fisherman, in order to recognise their immense contribution towards food production and economic improvement.


The first Friday in December was therefore institutionalised as the National Farmers’ Day.

The Day has however transformed from year to year, moving from bicycle to power tillers to tractors, to pick-ups and presently to a 3-bedroom house since 2002.

This follows support from corporate institutions and a few individuals.

Below are the Past winners and their prizes

2014    George Asamoah Amankwah


The 49-year old of Europa farms in the Western region with one wife and three children has been farming for 17 years was awarded a $100,000 three-bedroom house donated by the ADB Bank, to be sited at a place of his choice.

He emerged tops among other farmers with 129 acres of maize, 6,800 plantation farm, 20 acres of pepper and okra farms, plantain intercrop of 6000 acres , 25000 mounds of yam, 20 acres of oil farm, 147 cattle and three fish ponds with catfish and tilapia, and a host of other farm produce.

2013    Alhaji Awudu Karim

The 58-year-old from the Kasena Nankana District of the Upper East region received a three-bedroom house, a pick-up vehicle and a tractor. Alhaji Karim who is married to four wives with 19 children is a diversified farmer with over 200 acres of lands on which he cultivates maize, rice, groundnuts, sorghum, and mangoes.

He also engages in poultry and livestock farming with 410 guinea fowls, 220 chickens, 420 sheep, 360 goats, six pairs of bullocks as well as 740 other livestock.


He also employs the use of appropriate technologies and has two tractors, 5 donkey carts and three motor Kia trucks as part of his farm machinery.

2012     Lemuel Kwashie Martey

Thirty-Eight (38) year old was awarded a three-bedroom fully furnished house and a pick-up vehicle.

2011     Ignatius Agbo

A 56-year-old farmer in the Upper Denkyira East municipality, who was winner on the 27th Farmers Day, in addition to the house, received a generator, a laptop and a modem to help him access the Internet. He also had a life insurance cover and enjoyed a fully paid trip to India where he interacted with farmers in that country to learn from them. He has a farm size of four hundred and eighty (480) acres with 200 acres currently under cultivation.


His scale of operation includes Cocoa 160 acres, Oil Palm 12 acres, Citrus 15 acres, Plantain 15 acres, cow pea 2 acres, sweet potatoes 1acre Cassava 5 acres, Coconut 2 acre, vegetables together with his livestock occupying about 50 acres.

2010     Benjamin Adjetey Adjei

The 60-year-old hails from Dodowa in the Greater Accra Region and took home a fully furnished 3 bedroom house with an accident cover of GH¢5000. Adjetey Adjei is engaged in crop farming, owns a cattle ranche, as well as poultry farms.

2009     Davies Narh Korboe

At the age of 36, his achievment affirms eloquently that agriculture is not for the elderly the less privilege or less educated, but for all youth the elderly the educated and is a business venture. He received a GH¢110,000.00, 3 – bedroom house.


2008     Dr. Simon Saku

A  54-year-old, Managing Director of Emil Farms at Wenchi in the Brong-Ahafo Region, received a three-bed room house valued at GH¢ 40,000 to be built at a place of his choice as his prize.

He is into cocoa, citrus, teak, vegetable, tubers, cereals and mango cultivation and fish ponds among other farming activities at Wenchi, Amponsakrom, Bedibenom, Abotareye, Subinso and Aduana, all in Brong Ahafo Region.

2007     Alhaji Abdul Salem Akate

Alhaji Abdul Salam Akate, received the keys to a three-bedroom house worth GH¢ 60,000.00 as his prize. The fully furnished house was built for him by the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) at Adako-Jachie near Ejisu in Ashanti.


2006     Mohammed Tetteh

A 50-year-old in the Greater Accra Region, received 300-million cedis three- bedroom house to be built at a place of his choice. The house would be fully furnished with a gas cooker and refrigerator.

Mr Tetteh, who has two wives and 10 children, has 344 hectares and had cropped 142 hectares out of it.

He has 150 full time workers and 600 casuals, who are working on his mango; maize; oil palm; plantain; vegetables and livestock farms.

2005     Edward Osei Nsenkyire


A farmer in Ashanti, Brong Ahafo, Central and Eastern Regions, was adjudged the National Best Farmer.

2004     Madam Efua Frimpongmaa

The only woman to have ever won the awards, Madam Afua Frimponmaa, a widow and mother of 11 from Agona Nkum in the Central Region, received the keys to a GH¢60,000 three-bedroom flat at the Beach Drive at Krokrobite near Accra.

2003     Adjei Twum Bandoh

a 54-year-old accountant and Managing Director of Bandoh Commercial Farms was crowned the best farmer and asked to choose a location of his choice where his three-bedroom house would be constructed.


This was at a ceremony in Cape Coast to mark the 19th National Farmers Day in 2003.

2002     Baba Abudu Takora

A 65-year-old farmer from Adudukrom in the Upper Denkyira District in the Central Region, also got a GH¢30,000 for being the best farmer in 2002.

2001     Mattew Kwasi Bonsu

For the first time since the commencement of the awards for farmers, Nana Mathew Akwesi Bonsu, 51, was handed over the keys to his house. He is from the eastern region.


Some of the other past National Best Farmers are: Mr Thomas Ahima from Ashanti region 1987; Mr Yaw Odame Awuah, Ashanti region, 1988; Mr Daniel Safo from Eastern region 1989; Mr Maham Moli, Northern region 1990 and Mr Lawrence Twerefour from the Eastern region 1991.

Other award winners included Mallam Seidu Abdulai from Upper West 1992; Nana Aforo Kwan II from Western region 1993; Nana Agyemang Nkwantabisa III, from Ashanti region 1994; Nana Kofi Gyedu from Greater Accra region 1995; Mr. George Stanley Alokodongo, Upper East Region 1996; Mr. Abdulai Gbandi, Northern Region, 1997; Mr. T. F. Asare from Ashanti Region 1998, Mr. John Kwame Mensah from Central Region 1999, and Mr. Baba Kumasi, from Upper East, 2000.

Even though the celebration has endured for the last 30 years, the question that lingers on is how has agriculture fared since the institution of the National Farmers’ Day?

Some have argued that Agriculture is basically still at the subsistence level, depending on rain.

This means we need to do go beyond the 'merrymaking' of the Day, where a few farmers are assembled to receive honours; we need to improve the Agricultural sector, and make it more attractive to the youth. That is one of the surest way to achieve food security.


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