Africa To Gates: Start The Green Revolution Without Us

Africa To Gates: Start The Green Revolution Without Us

An urgent workshop has been organized next week in Ethiopia to strategize against genetically modified seed, Bill Gates’ Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa and the new G8 Alliance for food security, according to a report in SpyGhana.

The Alliance for Food Sovereignty, or AFSA, identified AGRA and G8 as participating in a global agenda to “corporatize” and profit from African agriculture, rather than meet the needs of African communities and farmers, the report said.

AFSA is a pan-African network established in 2009 as the voice for small farmers and indigenous groups in relation to rights to local and equitable food distribution.

“Now more than ever we are finding the livelihoods of the continent’s small-scale farmers increasingly under threat, often in the name of development and poverty alleviation,” said AFSA coordinator Million Belay.

Belay identified the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition, a private sector investment initiative launched by the G8 in 2012, as just the latest in a wave of initiatives looking to gain intellectual property rights over the continent’s crops and seed varieties.

The objective of these organizations is to open up African agriculture to multinational agribusiness companies with the cooperation of African governments, donors and private sector investors, with no regard to the needs or wishes of African farmers, Belay said. The New Alliance is strongly linked to other private sector initiatives, such as the corporate Grow Africa Partnership and the Bill Gates Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

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AFSA Chairman Bern Guri said, “the combined effect of these initiatives is to hand over Africa’s food and seed sovereignty to foreign corporations, reducing the availability of local plant varieties, weakening Africa’s rich biodiversity, and denying millions of farmers the right to breed and share crops needed to feed their families.”

“Never before has there been a more coordinated and better funded attempt to transform Africa’s peasant based agriculture into a commercial enterprise,” Guri said.