The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Mr. Bryan Acheampong, has called on citizens to protect the nation's water sources.
This appeal comes in the wake of the government's efforts to provide clean drinking water to the population.
Speaking at the 43rd World Food Day observance, which had the theme “Water is life, Water is food, Leave no one behind,” Mr. Acheampong emphasized the importance of safeguarding water sources.
He stressed the need for people to stop indiscriminate waste dumping, open defecation, and improper disposal of plastic and electronic waste into water sources.
Mr. Acheampong also revealed that the Ministry, through the Tree Crop Development Programme, was working to rehabilitate lands previously used for non-food trees, which had caused chemicals to leach into underground water bodies and affect the food chain.
He noted the importance of supporting the fight against illegal mining, as it is a lengthy and costly process to rid water of pollutants that harm humans, plants, and animals.
Ms. Mavis Hawa Koomson, the Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, acknowledged the significant contribution of the fisheries sector to national food and nutritional security.
She reported that in 2022, domestic fish production reached 657,272 metric tons, with per capita fish consumption standing at 21.9 kilograms, compared to the ECOWAS average of 13 kilograms.
However, Ms. Koomson expressed concern that traditional sources, particularly sea, and inland water bodies, were overexploited due to illegal, unregulated fishing and climate change, in addition to mismanagement of waste, particularly plastics that were polluting water sources.
United Nations Resident Coordinator, Mr. Charles Abani, highlighted the pressing issue of hunger and the fact that 780 million people worldwide were suffering from food insecurity.
He noted the UN Secretary-General's concern about the global humanitarian appeal facing severe underfunding, which could potentially force the World Food Programme to cut its vital aid programs.
In response to the crisis, Mr. Abani called for governments to take responsibility for ensuring their citizens had enough to eat, emphasizing the importance of international solidarity due to the resource constraints faced by many governments.
The Country Director of the World Food Programme (WFP), Ms. Barbara Clemens, outlined the organization's engagement in partnerships to promote food and water security in Ghana. The strategic goal is to ensure every Ghanaian has food and nutrition security.
Development partners participating in the 43rd World Food Day celebration pledged continuous support to the Ministry in its mission to enhance water and food security in Ghana.