Friday, 2 December, 2022 ๐—ก๐—ข๐—ฅ๐—ง๐—›๐—˜๐—ฅ๐—ก ๐—ฅ๐—˜๐—š๐—œ๐—ข๐—ก๐—”๐—Ÿ ๐— ๐—œ๐—ก๐—œ๐—ฆ๐—ง๐—˜๐—ฅ ๐—ฃ๐—ฅ๐—”๐—œ๐—ฆ๐—˜๐—ฆ ๐—™๐—”๐—ฅ๐— ๐—˜๐—ฅ๐—ฆ ๐—”๐—ก๐—— ๐—™๐—œ๐—ฆ๐—›๐—˜๐—ฅ๐— ๐—˜๐—ก ๐—œ๐—ก ๐—ง๐—›๐—˜ ๐—ก๐—ข๐—ฅ๐—ง๐—›๐—˜๐—ฅ๐—ก ๐—ฅ๐—˜๐—š๐—œ๐—ข๐—ก

The Northern Regional Minister, Hon. Shani Alhassan Shaibu, at the National Farmer’s Day Celebration held in Jarigu, a suburb of Tamale, Northern Region, paid his greatest respect and commendation for the hardworking farmers and fishermen in the region, who are committed to providing food for the Northern communities and the country as a whole.

He asserted that farmers in the region have benefitted immensely from the government of Ghanaโ€™s policies over the last few years in various ways. “For instance, a total of 224,323.65 MT of NPK, urea, sulfur, and sulfate of ammonia were subsidized and distributed to farmers in the region between 2017 and 2022. In the 2022 crop season alone, 12,074.95 metric tons of subsidized fertilizer were distributed to farmers.

He added that a total of 461,584 farmers, comprising 396,620 males and 64,964 females, have been enrolled on the PFJ for the respective crops (maize, rice, soy, cowpea, vegetables, etc.) and fertilizers from 2017 to 2022.

He also stated that a total of 1,190,442 cashew seedlings were raised and distributed to 4875 farmers to plant in various communities covering 3,818 hectares in the region between 2019 and 2022.
On the part of veterinary officers, he said a total of 104 have been employed between 2019 and 2022, bringing the regional total from 39 to 143.

He added that, with the assistance of MAG, 176 motorbikes have been distributed to agricultural extension officers in the region to enhance their performance.

According to him, the northern region is committed to the fullest implementation of government policies toward the development of agriculture. “Among these programs are Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ), Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD), Rearing for Food and Jobs (RFJ), Agriculture Mechanization Centers (AMC), Savannah Zone Agricultural Productivity Improvement Project (SAPIP), Ghana Agriculture Sector Investment Programme (AGSIP), and Savannah Investment Project (SIP), “he stated.

“Agricultural mechanization is key to value addition.” In view of this, four (4) Agricultural Mechanization Service Centers (AMSECs) have been established, namely: Denko Services Limited, Kambang Cooperative and Marketing Company Limited, Indofarms Ghana Limited, and Nuru Farms, with the support of SAPIP. These businesses were provided with a variety of agro-machinery, including planting, crop maintenance, harvesting, and rice mills.”In total, ten (10) tractor-mounted seed drills, ten (10) tractor-mounted fertilizer spreaders, twenty (20) rice reapers, ten (10) straw bailers, ten (10) combined harvesters, one (1) solar-powered rice mill plant, and three (3) diesel-powered rice mill plants were given to these AMSECs to provide mechanization services to farmers around their catchment areas,” he said.

However, he lamented the perianal bush fires facing farmers during harvesting and the increasing invasion of Northern markets by suspected smugglers who purchase products and carry them across the borders.

He called on traditional rulers in the region to mobilize communities to handle the bushfire situation by declaring zero tolerance for bush-burning in all communities this year, as well as urging MMDAs and security agencies to ensure the enforcement of the directives and bring all perpetrators to book.

He also cautioned all persons engaged in food smuggling to desist, adding that the Security Agencies will soon โ€˜clamp downโ€™ on them and ensure that they are punished.

โ€œThis exercise will only succeed through the support of all of us and especially our traders and local collaborators. Please assist us with timely information to deal with such people and let us note that if we allow these people to succeed we would face a high risk as a region. I want to also charge our Agriculture Officers to be on the lookout to report the perpetrators of this illegal act,โ€ he added.
๐—™๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ’๐˜€ ๐——๐—ฎ๐˜†

The government of Ghana established Farmers’ Day in 1985 to recognize the key role farmers and fishermen contribute to the economy, particularly the esteemed yield of agriculturalists and fishermen in 1984. It occurred following the disastrous agricultural years of 1982 and 1984.

In light of this, the first Friday of every December and every Friday of every November (during an election year) is declared a holiday to pay respect to the importance of the farming and fishing industries in the socio-economic growth of Ghana.

This year, in the Northern region, the Chief of Diare, Naa Abdulai Abubakari, was honored as the Best Regional Farmer. He is a seed grower, AMSEC owner, and commercial farmer who cultivates 177 acres of rice, 222 acres of soybeans, and 115 acres of maize. He is currently supporting 300 outgrowers for rice, soybeans, and maize. He employs 12 permanent and 25 casual workers. He was awarded a tricycle, a mist blower, a poly tank, 20 bags of muriate of potash, 2 pairs of Wallington boots, 2 knapsacks, and a certificate.

The current Assembly man for Lahagu, Mr. Salifu Tahiru was named the Best Farmer in the Tamale Metro.He took away a tricycle, knapsack, Wallington boot, cutlass, and a certificate.

Other categories included: Rural Commercial Woman, Community Volunteer Agriculture, Extension Agent, Sales Agent, Regional Best Fisher, Regional Best Innovative Farmer, Regional Best Livestock Farmer, Regional Best Crops Farmer, Regional Best AEA, Regional Overall Best Farmer, Best Metro Youth Farmer, Best Metro Crops Farmer, Best Metro Livestock Farmer, Best Metro Extension Agent, and Best Metro Woman Farmer.

The awards were from the Co-operative Development Foundation of Canada to some actors under the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Project.

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