About 1,000 farmers in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region benefited from fertilizer subsidy in the just-ended farming season.
Mr Alexis Ayamdor Adugdaa, the Bongo District Chief Executive (DCE), who disclosed this at a durbar to celebrate farmers’ day in the district, said the Northern Rural Growth Programme [NRGP] also supported 59 farmer groups in capacity building in modern agriculture practices with regard to the cultivation and marketing of maize, rice and soya beans.
The DCE said government had always shown its resolve to commit more resources for the promotion of agricultural activities and programmes such as the Ghana Agriculture Investment Programme [GAIP] which is aimed at scaling up the gains made by NRGP to cover the whole country.
Also, the various interventions being implemented by the Ghana Social Opportunities Project [GSOP] in the areas of climate change and road works were all meant to extend development to the grassroots, he added.
He commended development partners including the RESULT Project, Tree Aid Ghana, Youth Harvest Foundation and ADRO for complementing the development efforts of the Assembly, and urged them not to relent but to continue extending assistance to the communities.
The acting Bongo District Director of Agriculture, Mr Emmanuel Abobire, earlier in his welcome address, commended farmers in the District for working hard and maintaining their groups that enabled them to access loans from the banks.
He said it was rather unfortunate that only two of the eight farmer groups that applied to the Bongo Rural Bank for loans to fund their farming activities this year were given the money because the other groups had defaulted in paying back previous loans given them.
He therefore made appealed to those who owed monies to the banks to pay up their indebtedness so that their colleagues could also gain access to loan facilities.
The Paramount Chief of the Bongo Traditional Area, Naba Baba Salifu Atamaale Alemyaarum, cautioned the farmers against indiscriminate tree felling and bush burning, stressing that the practice impacted negatively on the climate and rainfall patterns.
A 42-year-old farmer, Mr Nsoh Moses Atampika was adjudged the District’s overall Best Farmer, while the best female farmer award went to Madam Apoka Apana from the Goo Zorkor community.
For her prize Mr Atampika was given a brand new Apsonic Motorking engine-propelled tricycle, knap sack sprayer, three bags of fertilizer, assorted veterinary drugs, one radio recorder, one wall clock and a certificate.
There was an exhibition of different types of crops grown in the area including maize, millet, sorghum, beans, soya, groundnuts, bambara beans, sweet potatoes at the function.
This year’s national farmers day celebration had as its theme, “Transform Ghana; Invest In Agriculture”.