A Roman Catholic priest has called for stiffer punishment for people who indiscriminately set bushfires to serve as deterrent to others.
The Reverend Father Simon Obeng Gyan of Techiman St. Paul's Roman Catholic Church urged traditional authorities, unit and Assembly Members to enforce the bylaws against bushfires.
He was speaking at the 3rd annual farmers' award in Techiman. In all, 20 workers and farmers were presented with prizes comprising bicycles, machetes, Wellington boots, tape recorders, travelling bags and florescent lamps.
Rev. Fr. Gyan called on the unemployed youth to go into farming to improve their livelihood and stressed how important it was for the farmers to exchange ideas and seek advice from
agricultural extension officers.
Mr. Prince Yaw Donyina, Techiman Municipal Chief Executive, commended Mr. Samuel Yeboah, Managing Director of Agyaaku farms, for organizing the awards programme.
He said the government appreciated the efforts of private businesses in nation building.
Mr Donyina paid special tribute to the award farmers for their hard work to ensure national food security.
He said the Municipal Assembly had constructed three irrigation projects valued more than 20 billion cedis. It has also purchased three tractors to support the youth to undertake serious agricultural activities.
Mr Samuel Yeboah, Managing Director of Agyaaku farms, urged farmers to regard farming as business and an alternative livelihood.
He advised them to adopt modern technologies on farming practices and also to adhere to the teachings and advice from agricultural extension officers in order to guard against post harvest losses.
Dr. Stephen Ockling, Acting Municipal Director of Agricultural Services, said the major challenge facing the farmers was lack of financial assistance.
He advised farmers to form viable associations to enable them to access loans from financial institutions to expand their farming ventures.
Mr. James Kwame Amoah from Amoma in Kintampo South district was adjudged the best farmer.
He took home a water pumping machine, whilst the best worker award went to Mr. Nelson Kwamina, Marketing manager of the company at Atebubu and he received a colour television set.