Accra, 16 October, World Food Day, wake-up call for a global response to the current migration challenge.
Migration, if managed in a humane and orderly way, can contribute to the economic growth in destination and countries of origin, declared Bukar Tijani, FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Africa, as the global community commemorated World Food Day on the theme Change the Future of Migration- Invest in Food Security and Rural Development.
We can end migration of all forms by addressing the root causes, create better conditions and resilient livelihoods for rural communities in Africa, he added, addressing the government officials, diplomatic corps, civil society organizations, young people and the media gathered for the ceremony in the Ghanaian capital city.
Mr. Tijani praised the Government of Ghana for initiatives to stem migration in rural communities, such as the recently launched Planting for Food and Jobs, and underlined that migration should be a choice, not a necessity.
Ghana’s Minister of State at the Ministry of Food and Agriculture, Mr Nurah Gyiele, emphasised that programmes of the Government of Ghana, such as the the Planting for Food and Jobs, One District One Factory, One Village One Dam, and Rural Infrastructure for Poverty Reduction Programme are meant to enable conditions for the creation of job opportunities in rural communities.
He identified some causes of mass drift of people from rural areas as rural poverty, farming insecurity, unemployment, natural resource depletion, conflicts, poor governance and political instability.
Investing in sustainable development
World Food Day is a chance for FAO to show its commitment to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2 � to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030. It is also a day to celebrate the progress FAO has already made towards reaching zero hunger.
The United Nations Residence Coordinator in Ghana, Christine Evans-Klock, commended Ghana for adopting a comprehensive National Migration Policy in 2016, which she said would address some of the root causes of migration.
Indeed, more investment in agriculture and food security is a sure way to change the future of migration, she observed.
UN figures show that there are roughly 244 million international migrants, while 763 million migrate within their own countries; 65 million forced migrants of whom about 21.3 million are refugees, 40.8 million Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) and 3.2 million asylum seekers.
Source: Ghana News Agency