The Veterinary Service Directorate of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) is owing 34 farmers a total of GHS1,448,157.02, the 2016 Auditor-General’s report has disclosed.
The report said as of December 2016, the 34 farmers, whose poultry farms and farm products were destroyed by Avian Influenza between May and October 2015, were not paid the said amount as compensation.
It is recalled that the Ghana National Poultry Farmers Association asked government to compensate farmers whose birds were destroyed by the veterinary services as part of measures to contain the Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) outbreak at the time.
Some were compensated, but others were not.
In a similar incident in 2007, a total of GHS1.5million was paid as compensation to farmers by the government when about 13, 371 birds were reported dead as a result of the outbreak.
The A-G has therefore advised management of MoFA to ensure that the outstanding amount of GHS1,448,157.02 be paid to the affected farmers to compensate for the loss.
Meanwhile, officers of MoFA at Ejura and Tamale failed to recover loans totalling GHS656,225.30 from some 121 farmers.
The farmers were granted the loans in the form of farm inputs between the 2013 and 2015 farming seasons. Even though the loan agreement spelt out that recovery was to be completed within 12 months, the beneficiaries had defaulted in repayment.
The A-G’s report has recommended that management involve organisations with the experience of debt collection in the recovery of the amount from the farmers involved.