Bill not 'friendly' to smallholder farmers - PFAG


According to the farmers, mega transnational seed and fertiliser companies will take advantage of the bill to kill smallholder farms in Ghana.

The Bill is expected to improve the seed industry by providing a legal framework for the protection of the rights of breeders of new plant varieties and to enable Ghana to be in full compliance with obligations under the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPs) of the WTO while promoting and encouraging investment in the seed industry.

However, Mr. Charles Nyaaba, Programmes officer of the Peasant Farmers Association of Ghana (PFAG) believes the current state of the Bill will end up doing great disservice to smallholder farmers.

"The current state of the Bill is actually giving the right to big time commercial breeders. Clause 23 gives too much discretion to government and can be changed without adequate notice and consultation of farmers...We are not resisting the Bill entirely. There are certain clauses within the Bill which are making this Bill not to be small-holder farmer friendly. Some are calling for these clauses to be amended," he said on Radio Ghana.


Meanwhile, a suit against the Plant Breeders Bill has been thrown out by the court, and this paves way for parliament to lift the bill again for debate to continue.

Vice Chairman of the Legal and Constitutional Affairs of parliament, Magnus Kofi Amoateng said "If the Peasant Farmers have made inputs, then we have taken their views into consideration."


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