The Ministry of Food and Agriculture in collaboration with JICA have conducted farm rice trials in selected farming communities in the Gushegu Municipality to introduce farmers to rice cultivation technology to increase rice production.
Speaking to the GNA in Gushegu on Tuesday on MOFA’s collaborations with NGOs in the sector, Mr. Mustapha Zakaria, Municipal Director of MOFA said beneficiary farmers harvested 7.392 tons of paddy rice last year.
He said MOFA had also taken delivery of 2,144 gimmers from RING for distribution to 688 beneficiaries in 40 farming communities in the municipality to help improve production.
Mr Zakaria added that 194 more small Ruminants had also been distributed to three communities and that the rest of the 37 communities left would have their share of the animals this year.
He said under the RING project, 653 beneficiaries who were supported with PICS sacks, hoes, and cutlasses were trained and supported to cultivate 362.5 acres of soya beans and all beneficiaries of these projects comprised males, females, the aged, youth groups and PLWDs.
Mr Zakaria said the numerical strength of his staff was a constraint to smooth implementation of planned activities, which he said had compelled the ministry to engage the services of the Youth Employment personnel, volunteers and Assembly members to reach out to farmers in remote areas.
He said only five per cent of the staff had means of transport and lack of decent residential accommodation and inadequate offices for staff were impeding their administration.
He therefore, recommended for early and timely release of funds for smooth implementation of activities.