By Samuel Duodu, Afrefreso.
Twenty-three farmers, including the three district best farmers in the Atebubu-Amantin District of the Brong Ahafo were honoured at a durbar held at Afrefreso, a farming community, to mark the District Farmers Day on the theme “Grow More Food”.
The awardees who were mostly into food crops, livestock and poultry were given prizes including knapsack spraying machines, wellington boots, machetes, wax prints and bicycles.
Thirty-seven-year-old Issah Abubakari from Lailai was adjudged the District Best Farmer and presented with a motor-bike in addition to a spraying machine, wellington boots, machetes and wax prints.
Ametus Dorsah from Congo/Kokofu and Comfort Akua Mansah from Afrefreso were also adjudged the second and third best district farmers respectively and they were both presented with three and two packets of roofing sheets respectively, in addition to spraying machines, wellington boots, machetes and wax prints.
Mr Sanja Nanja, the Atebubu-Amantin District Chief Executive (DCE), in his address urged the youth in the district not to regard farming as a job for the old but embrace it with all enthusiasm to enhance their livelihoods.
He said the youth should see farming as a business worth investing in since farming, like any other business, needed financial investments so that should not scare them.
Mr Nanja disclosed that the assembly, in collaboration with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA), under the Youth in Agriculture programme, cultivated 55 acres of rice and 447 acres of maize, while 80 livestock farmers were supplied with 800 sheep for breeding under the Livestock Development Project (LDP).
He expressed the hope that by the first quarter of next year, 400 sheep would be supplied to farmers, while the Inland Valley Rice Project (IVRP) which would phase out in June, next year continued to provide financial assistance to farmers in communities such as Jato Zongo, New and Old Konkrompe, Mem and Duabone 1 and 11 who had embarked on rice farming.
These and other interventions, he said had been put in place by the government to demonstrate the ‘Better Ghana Agenda” that the government was pursuing in agriculture.
Mr Nanja congratulated all the hard-working farmers in the district, especially the award winners and said the awards should motivate them to work even harder to produce more food to ensure food security in the country.
Mr Wilfred Anonadaga, the District Director of Agriculture, urged farmers in the district to see agriculture as a very lucrative business with high returns.