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Agriculture remains the mainstay of our national economy – DCE


  7 Novembre      9        Agriculture (1721),

   

By Caleb Kuleke, GNA
     Accra, Nov. 7, GNA – Mr Ernest Patrick Kodzo Mallet, District Chief Executive (DCE), South Dayi, says agriculture remains one of the most important sectors of the economy and must be given the needed boost to thrive.
     He said the sector played a major role in advancing the development of the national economy as it employed majority of the populace and contributed to foreign exchange earnings and balance of payment of the country.
     Mr Mallet who was speaking at the District’s commemoration of the 36th National Farmers’ Day at Tongor-Dzemeni, in the South Dayi District, said the country had come this far as a result of the hard work of farmers.
     He said it was regrettable that most farmers continued to live within the poverty bracket and undertook subsistence farming, which “runs contrary to what pertains in other places, where farmers are very well to do, use machinery and improved technologies in their operations.”
     “The way we practice agriculture in our part of the world leaves much to be desired and demotivate the up and coming youth to venture into the sector although it possesses the highest potential of return for the individual and the nation,” he noted.
     The DCE said it was important for the country to make conscious efforts to address all challenges confronting farmers so that the full potential of the sector could be harnessed and to attract more people, especially the youth to the sector.
     He commended President Akufo-Addo for making agriculture less laborious and rewarding through the Planting for Food and Jobs ((PFJ) initiative as the sector could only attract more people, especially youth who were energetic when it was made less stressful and employable.
     Mr Enoch Dzadzra, the District’s Director of Agriculture said in the midst of the COVID-19, the government put in place a policy of input subsidies to enable farmers remained in business and make good production, disclosing that based on that, mechanisms were quickly put in place to make farmers in the District to have access to the inputs with ease.
     He said 10 agro-input dealers were registered in various parts of the District under the PFJ programme so that farmers could have access to the inputs wherever they were to enhance their business and maximize production.
     Mr Dzadra said under the PFJ programme 61, 170 bags of the 25 kilograms NPK, 300 bags of the 50 kilograms NPK and 28, 792 bags of urea were distributed to 9, 299 farmers, made up of 6, 786 males and 2, 513 females.
     He said farmers were also receiving training in maize and rice production and processing, beekeeping, current method of livestock feeding and housing, prevention and scheduled livestock and poultry disease, good environmental practices, establishment of home gardens standardisation, packaging and branding of products, among others.
     Awards were presented to nine deserving farmers, with Mr Bamo Nsambeh, 49, from Wegbe Wawase, emerging the overall best farmer of the District and took home one motor tricycle, six crocodile machetes, two wellington boots, one cloth, and a certificate.
     He has 20 acres of yam, 10 acres of maize, eight acres of cassava, one acre of plantain, one acre of tomatoes, two acres of pepper, 0.2 acre of groundnut, two acres of oil palm, one acre of cocoa, 10 acres of intercrop – yam and aguzi, 30 mango trees,  30 goats, 20 sheep, 134 local fowls, and five dogs.
     Mr Nsambeh was grateful to the Assembly for the recognition and urged farmers to preserve and work hard because “one will enjoy the fruits of his labour.”
     He implored farmers to adhere to instructions of the agriculture extension officers in this era of technology application and unpredictable climate.
     The event was on the theme: “Ensuring agribusiness development under COVID-19: Challenges and Opportunities.”

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