Adubia (Ash), June 12, GNA – The Amansie South District Assembly has jointly launched the Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) and Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD), with a call on farmers in the District to embrace the programmes to improve their lives.
The PFJ which is one of government’s flagship programmes aimed at increasing food production and the incomes of farmers, was launched in 2017 at a time that the Amansie South had not been carved out of the Amansie West District.
The Assembly officially launched the programme together with the PERD as part of efforts to create awareness for more farmers to get involved and benefit from the programme in the District.
Over 250 farmers who attended the ceremony received wellington boots and cutlasses, as incentives to patronize the programmes.
The occasion was also used to hand over motorbikes to the Department of Agriculture, to boost extension services to farmers under the Modernizing Agriculture in Ghana (MAG) project, being implemented jointly by the Governments of Ghana and Canadian.
Some cocoa spraying machines procured by the Assembly to augment the spraying exercise in the District, were also handed over to the various gangs.
Mr. William Asante Bediako, the District Chief Executive (DCE), said the launch formed part of the Assembly’s comprehensive strategies to improve agriculture in the District.
He said the citizens were predominantly farmers and the Assembly was committed to investing in the sector not only to contribute to national food production but also boost the local economy.
The DCE said the introduction of PFJ and PERD by government was a deliberate effort to empower farmers to adopt modern farming methods to improve yields, efficiency, returns on their investments, with a resultant increase in food security.
“It is therefore imperative for farmers to take advantage of the programmes for the mutual benefits of the individual farmer and the state,” the DCE added.
Mr Bediako announced that the Assembly through the department of agriculture would soon distribute 13,000 oil palm seedlings to farmers under the PERD programme.
He entreated interested farmers to register with the department, adding that, in excess of 20,000 additional seedlings would subsequently be produced by the close of the year in order to reach out to more farmers.
Mr. John Swanzy, the District Director of Agriculture encouraged farmers in the District to embrace the initiatives to inject some modernization into their farming activities.
He said his outfit was always ready to provide technical and extension services to the farmers, disclosing that, government had further reduced the already subsidized inputs under the PFJ, making them more affordable.