Agric experts seek stoppage of AGRA funding in Africa

By Valentine Amanze

African agriculture experts have appealed to donor governments to withdraw their funding from Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) and shift it to programmes that help smallholder farmers, particularly women, develop climate-resilient ecologically sustainable farming practices such as agroecology, which is increasingly recognized and supported by Food and Agriculture Prganisation (FAO) and the international donor community.

They also urged
African governments to withdraw from AGRA and other Green Revolution programmes, including input-subsidy programems, and transition their agricultural development programmes toward a more robust array of policies that respond to smallholder farmers’ expressed needs.

The experts include Timothy Wise, co-author of the report and senior advisor at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy; Mamadou Goita, also a co-author of the report, a development economist and Executive Director of IRPAD; Vandana Shiva, an environmental activist, food sovereignty advocate, and renowned anti-globalization author; and Devinder Sharma, one of India's leading agriculture, food and trade policy expert, researcher, and writer.

They made the appeal in a webinar organized by Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF) in collaboration with the African Faith and Justice Network (AFJN), Navdanya International, and the Institute for Research and Promotion of Alternative Development (IRPAD), with the theme, “Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa’s (AGRA) Failed Promises: Liberating our Agriculture.”

The participants also urged all governments and donors to respect the right to food, peasants’ rights and other internal organisations.

Seeing how AGRA has failed, they agreed that it did not make sense for AGRA’s head, Agnes Kalibata, to be the special envoy of the UN Secretary General to the UN 2020 World Food Summit.
The conversation was based on the recent report by a coalition of groups including Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung, Bread for the World, IRPAD and Biodiversity & Biosafety Association of Kenya (BIBA).

The report is “False Promises-The Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa – outlines the promises that AGRA” dangled before African countries and what the result has been in over 14 years after the launch of the Green Revolution in Africa.

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