John Agyekum Kufuor, President of Ghana from 2001-2008, received the World Food Prize at an award ceremony yesterday at the Borlaug International Symposium in Des Moines, Iowa.
Kufuor's economic and educational policies led to significant positive changes in Ghana during the first decade of the new millennium. Ghana recently attained middle-income status and will likely achieve the first Millennium Development Goal of cutting poverty in half before the target year of 2015.
According to the recently released 2011 Global Hunger Index (GHI), Ghana was the only country in Sub-Saharan Africa to rank among the ten countries that most improved their GHI scores since 1990. Ghana reduced its score by 59 percent, a remarkable achievement which moved the country from "alarming" to "moderate" on the GHI scale. This success resulted from a combination of investments in agriculture, rural development, education, and health, including strong increases in the rate of immunization against common childhood diseases.
In Ghana’s Transformation, an essay published by IFPRI earlier this year, Kufuor gives a first-person account of his years as president, describing some of his administration’s most successful projects, especially those related to agriculture.
2011 Global Hunger Index: Ghana