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11.08.2004 Regional News

Govt allocates 40 tractors to Northern farmers

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Tamale, Aug.11, GNA- The government has allocated 40 "Farmtrac" tractors to farmers to revamp the agricultural sector in the Northern Region.

The allocation forms part of the 1,000 tractors that the government imported from India to support the youth in agriculture.

Each tractor with accessories cost 160 million cedis. Every beneficiary farmer is to deposit 40 million cedis at the Agricultural Development Bank (ADB) as part payment while the remaining 120 million cedis would be by instalment for three years.

Each of the 12 districts in the region was allocated two tractors while the Tamale Metropolitan Assembly received four.

Speaking at the presentation ceremony, Mr Ernest Debrah, Northern Regional Minister, said the importation of tractors formed part of the government's strategic plan to get the people out of poverty through farming, provision of social infrastructure, good governance and private sector development.

He said 300 youth farmers in each of the districts would have access to the tractors this year while another 300 farmers would benefit from the facility next year.

He said other farmers who were interested in the tractors should apply to the Ministry of Food and Agriculture for consideration, adding, "the 40 tractors allocated to the region are meant for the youth in agriculture".

The Regional Minister later handed over the keys to the tractors to the District Chief Executives on behalf of the beneficiaries from the various districts.

Mr Alhassan Iliasu, a beneficiary from Tolon, said he would go into maize, rice and groundnut production to increase his income and also feed the nation.

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