The Institute for Research and Promotion of Alternative Development, (IRPAD) , along with the African Faith and Justice Network, Health of Mother Earth Foundation and Navdanya International, has criticized the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, (AGRA), describing it as a failed scheme.
This joint declaration was made at a webinar – treating the recent report “AGRA’s Failed Promises” , – which was organized to outlines the promises made by AGRA to African countries and its results over 14 years after the launch of the Green Revolution on the continent.
AGRA was established in 2006 by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation with a vision to transform small-scale farming households, taking them from subsistence farming to farming as a thriving business.
The focus countries covered by AGRA include Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda. The organization promised to increase incomes and improve food security for 30 million farming households in these 11 countries by 2021.
Panelists in the discussion included Timothy Wise, co-author of the report on AGRA, and Mamadou Goita, a development economist and co-author of the same report, who serves as senior advisor at the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy as well as executive director of the IRPAD.
Also on the panel were Vandana Shiva, an environmental activist, food sovereignty advocate, and renowned anti-globalization author, and Devinder Sharma, a researcher, writer and leading expert in India on agriculture, food and trade policy.
Shiva tagged the Green Revolution as the “war chemical revolution” saying the program was not about feeding the world, but about selling fertilizers.
“Africa is diverse and we need to consider the territoriality of African food systems,”Goita asserted.
“Investment in agriculture must be based on a vision and that vision is agroecology, which is not an imported system but an African way of farming in tune with nature.”