The farmers in the rice growing communities of Dampha Kunda, Sotuma Samba, Kosemar, Limbambulu and Changally lang Kaddy in URR and Janjangbureh and Kudang in CRR were officially handed farm inputs that were procured by the Ministry of Agriculture through the Central Project Coordinating Unit (CPCU) to boost rice growing productivity.
The provision of these inputs and land development support is response a request made by farmers in URR and CRR to President Barrow during his visit to their rice fields.
The handing over ceremony was spearheaded by the CPCU under the watch of Permanent Secretary Assan Jallow.
Baba Ceesay, while receiving the equipment on behalf of the alkalo of Dampaha Kunda, described the response of the Ministry of Agriculture as a “big surprise and timely” as farmers are currently clearing their farms ahead of rainy season.
He revealed that farmers encounter a lot of difficulties in terms of inputs, saying with government’s intervention, farmers are at ease as most of their concerns are being taken care.
Mr. Ceesay thus lavished praise on government for playing their part in boosting agricultural production and productivity.
Speaking on behalf of the minister of Agriculture, Abdoulie Touray of CPCU described the event as a milestone. “This is yet another milestone to witness the handing over of these procured much needed production inputs and materials,” he said, adding they include spare parts for the pumping machines and fuel coupons to enhance farmers’ irrigated rice production.
He opined that these materials and equipment could have not come at a better time than now taking into account the transformation agenda of modernising agriculture as enshrined in the NDP and reflected into the second-generation Gambia National Agriculture Investment Plan, Food and Nutrition Security GNIP.
Mr. Touray dilated on the support to the rice communities in both URR and CRR, saying before the intervention of AVCDP project, the area was virtually a virgin land full of trees and shrubs.
He told the gathering that President Adama Barrow is committed to addressing the challenges facing the rice sub-sector within the Agriculture sector. He explained as a result of the official closure of all agricultural projects that were funded by the African Development Bank and the Islamic Development Bank, the government through the Ministry of Agriculture and CPCU took a giant stride to ensure that most of the remaining land developments are addressed.