As the world mourns the death of Former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, who passed away August 18 2018 after a short illness, the agriculture sector feels the loss too.
The late Annan was a leader of progress in the world, improving the lives of millions of individuals in Africa and beyond, through his work. It is his call for a uniquely African green revolution to ensure that Africa can feed itself that led to the creation of Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) in 2006 to improve the incomes and livelihoods of Africa’s smallholder farmers.
Mr. Annan was the Founding Chair of AGRA and continued offering leadership and guidance to the institution right up until this year.
The organization works across the continent to help millions of smallholder farmers who make up 70 percent of Africa’s population boost their farm productivity and incomes. AGRA has 400 ventures that seek to advance and distribute quality seeds, increase farm produces, improve soil fertility, upgrade storage facilities, improve market information systems, strengthen farmers’ associations, expand access to credit for farmers and small suppliers, mitigate effects of climate change and advocate for national policies that benefit smallholder farmers amongst others.
Kofi Annan was a man who wore many different hats and his contribution to Africa will be forever etched in our memories.
If we get agriculture right in Africa, where most of the people now are working in that sector, not only would it help boost development but we will be secure in terms of food and nutrition and then be able to move on to other areas.