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12.08.2004 General News

FAO to assist Ghana fight locusts

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Accra, Aug. 12, GNA - The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) is to provide 365,000 dollars to Ghana to manage and contain any outbreak of locusts in the country.

The money is to be used to acquire insecticides, vehicles mounted with sprayers and knapsack sprayers that would be distributed to spray gangs in the districts.

Consequently, the FAO has sent its Technical advisors to the Ministry of Agriculture and are putting in place measures to adopt in case there was an outbreak of the pests.

Mr. Clement Eledi, Deputy Minister of Agriculture in-Charge of Crops disclosed this to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra on Thursday about arrangements being put in place in response to the forecast on the outbreaks of locusts in the Sub-Region.

Mr. Eledi said four ground teams for surveying; monitoring and reporting on any outbreak would be formed in the three Northern Regions that were identified as potential outbreak areas.

He said the three Regions would be provided with a large quantity of insecticides, three vehicles mounted with sprayers and 45 pieces of knapsack sprayers.

The rest are 150 hand-held drift sprayers, 300 set of personal protective equipment and the formation of 40 spray gangs in outbreak area.

He said each ground team would be provided with transport to enable them to move around the catchment areas as quickly as possible. The Deputy Minister also noted that a circular had been issued to all District Development Officers and District Assemblies to be on the alert and to inform the Ministry of any signs of grasshopper in any location.

He said the public would be sensitised to provide information to the nearest agriculture office on the pests in their locations to enable the ground teams to carry out targeted surveys and monitoring. He said the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) would liase with the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) and other mandated Institutions to contain any outbreak of the locusts.

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