Former President John Agyekum Kufuor says the only way agricultural productivity can be increased on the African continent is for governments to support its private sector through adequate budget allocations and incentives.
According to him, agricultural production is largely vested in the private sector and supporting it would help contribute to the growth and development of the continent.
Former President Kufuor was speaking at a conference organized by the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) in Accra on Tuesday, April 12.
The conference, which was attended by representatives from around the African continent and elsewhere, gave participants the platform to develop ideas and policies to ensure food security around the world.
Addressing participants at the conference, the former Ghana leader said African leaders must formulate acceptable standards that would help supervise the operations of the agricultural sector.
The move, according to him, would enable the sector enter the international market and rub shoulders with its competitors.
Furthermore, he called on the ministries of agriculture to sensitize and educate local farmers on modern systems in agriculture to help enhance the quality of their produce.
Speaking more on measures to increase agricultural productivity on the continent, he urged African leaders to develop measures to clamp down on the incidences of aflatoxins and its related poisons in agricultural production.
He indicated that aflatoxins are a major contributory factor to some severe sicknesses and deaths on the African continent.
Aflatoxins are poisonous and cancer-causing chemicals that are produced by certain molds which grow in the soil, decaying vegetation, hay and grains.
They are regularly found in improperly stored staple commodities such as cassava, corn, cotton seed, peanuts, rice, and a variety of spices.