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24.04.2004 Business & Finance

Citrus farmers in Oguaa get assistance from EDIF

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Efutu (C/R), April 24, GNA- Members of the Kakum Citrus Farmers co-operatives in the Cape Coast municipality, were on Friday presented with farming equipment including a tractor, two trailers, 600 cutlasses, 15,000 seedlings, a double-cabin pick up, and an amount of 55 million cedis, as working capital to support their farming activities. The Export Development and Investment Fund (EDIF) provided the support and to the about 600 farmers from various communities including Efutu, Mempeasem, Nyinasin, Dehia, Koforidua, Ansapetu, Brabedze and Efutu-Mampong at a ceremony Efutu, near Cape Coast.

The occasion also coincided with the official inauguration of the 42 societies, which form the cooperatives.

In an address, Mr Timothy Obeng, Chief Executive of the EDIF, said the facility would impact positively on the country's export trade in citrus products, in addition to enhancing the socio-economic lives of the farmers.

He asked members of the cooperatives to take advantage of the support given them to transform the citrus business in their communities.

The MP for the Cape Coast, Ms Christine Churcher, who was instrumental in getting the facility for the farmers, advised members to form co-operatives to enable them to have easy access to financial support.

She regretted that individual farmers who needed money to undertake their farming activities, encountered difficulties in obtaining loans from the banks, and therefore had no alternative than fall on moneylenders.

The MP, who is also the Minister of State for Basic, Secondary and Girl-child education, underscored the need for the farmers to utilise the facility judiciously to eradicate poverty. She also cautioned them against indulging in acts, intended to create disunity among them.

Ms Churcher, later handed-over the keys of the vehicles and the inputs to Mr George Sey Haizel, chairman of the cooperatives.

He commended Ms Churcher, for assisting them to obtain the facility, and assured her that the items would be used judiciously. Nana Afari Twako, chief of Efutu, who chaired the function, called on politicians to conduct their campaigns peacefully. 24 April 04

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