JIS News

The Board of the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) is looking to implement a number of measures, to improve the agency’s capacity to contribute to the revitalisation of the local agricultural sector.

This was disclosed by Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Roger Clarke, during a press briefing on Wednesday, April 24, at his Hope Gardens offices in St. Andrew.

Mr. Clarke said the development of the authority and the advancement of the agricultural industry will play a key role in the Government’s growth strategy.

“Having come to some agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), agriculture is going to have to play a very critical role as we go forth, because production and productivity will be the hallmarks if we are going to take ourselves out of the present predicament that we are in,” he stated.

Mr. Clarke said, in this regard, the Ministry has decided to put RADA in a position, so “that it can deliver on the promises that we are going to make, as far as the advancement of the agricultural sector is concerned”.

Chairman of the RADA National Board, Dr. Densil Williams informed that the restructuring will be based on four key principles.

The first, he said, will involve a re-imaging of the authority, which will see a stronger focus on women and youth in agriculture, as well as stronger marketing and promotion of the core functions of the organisation.

Another key element is greater focus on organisational realignment, which will centre on increasing staff morale, succession planning and workforce management.

“If you do not have motivated staff you are not going to get the level of output that you need, so that is an important (element) that we will have to deliver,” he said.

Dr. Williams said the Board will also place greater emphasis on expanding income-funding opportunities through building alliances with the private sector and NGOs.

Additionally, focus will be placed on training and greater collaboration with tertiary education institutions, with an emphasis on research and development.

By Athaliah Reynolds-Baker, JIS Reporter