Sakyikrom-Topreman (E/R), Dec 4, GNA - Mr Kingsley Kofi Adjei, a 53-year-old Mathematics Specialist from Akim Abodom, was adjudged the Kwaebibirem District Best Farmer at this year's Farmers Day held at Sakyikrom near Topreman in the Eastern Region on Friday.
He took home a Television Set, a Knapsack Spraying Machine; a pair of Wellington Boots, two cutlasses and a piece of wax print. Mr Adjei, who has been a full time farmer for the past eight years since his return from the United Kingdom after almost 20 years, has 15 acres of cocoa, 55 acres of oil palm, 25 acres of citrus, six acres of plantain, poultry and livestock.
Nineteen other farmers were honoured with prizes for excelling in various fields.
They were also given Knapsack Spraying Machines, Wellington Boots and cutlasses.
Mr Daniel Tetteh of Adenkyensu was declared the Best Cassava farmer, Mary Mensah of Okumaning, cocoyam, Daniel Atuah of Mempeasem, snails, Kwame Amponsah of Pramkuma, poultry and Kwakye Ankoma of Tweapeasi, plantain. The others award winners were Kwaku Mireku of Asuom, citrus, Safo Mensah of Kusi, piggery, Larry Bukari of Boadua, cattle, Kofi Boamah of Takroawsi, garden eggs, David Quao of Akim Abodom, okro and Daniel Okaif of Twumawusu for coffee. The prize for Best Food Processor went to Hafia Farms at Nkwantanang with Mr Baba Iddrisu taking the Best Agriculture Extension Agent while Mr William Yeboah Darte was adjourned Best Agriculture Officer.
Mr Yaw Yiadom Boakye, District Chief Executive (DCE), commended farmers for their contribution towards national development and urged them to continue, adding that people should emulate the award winners to move the country forward. He declared the District Assembly's readiness to continue assisting them under its poverty alleviation effort and encouraged the people especially the youth to acquire vocational skills and to go into farming.
The DCE stated that the government had ordered tractors and asked the financial institutions to assist farmers with loans to promote agriculture. He also advised farmers to liase with extension officers for advice to improve their methods.
Osabarima Atwere Bediako II, Osaewuohene of Akim Wenchi, commended the government for promoting agriculture and appealed to investors to establish agro-processing facilities in the District to create jobs for the people especially the youth.
At Bole in the Northern Region, 15 farmers were presented with awards for their dedication at the Farmers Day held at Maluwe. They were presented with awards ranging from Wellington Boots, cutlasses, wax print, certificates and bicycles.
The overall District Best Farmer award went to Mr Vincent Yelbadouri of Sakpa who took away a bicycle, bullock plough, radio cassette player, a piece of wax print, Willington boots, four cutlasses, four hoe blades and a certificate.
The District Chief Executive (DCE), Madam Elizabeth Salamatu Forgor, said the government was promoting aquaculture to increase the present production rate of 400 metric tons of fish to meet the national requirement of 800 metric tons. She stated that this was being implemented through the provision of more small-scale irrigation dams and dugouts and encouraged the people to go into fish farming. Madam Salamatu Forgor said the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) had sourced funds for farmers to expand their activities including the production of guinea fowls and small ruminants in the district. The DCE commended extension officers of MOFA for sensitising the people on various agriculture technologies and HIV/AIDS and said large numbers of cattle, sheep, goats and poultry had been vaccinated to promote livestock production in the district. The District Director of Agriculture, Dr. Saviour Danuame, said MOFA in its efforts to promote food production would continue to map out strategies and promote technologies to assist farmers to improve on their crops, livestock and fish production to reduce poverty.
Cashew farmers in the Sawla-Tuna-Kalba District in the Northern Region were assisted last year with loans totalling 704,134,558 cedis to promote their activities. Mr Ambrose Ansaayiri, District Director of Agriculture, speaking at the celebration at Jilinkon, said 96 per cent of the loans had been recovered.
He said 7,656 livestock had been vaccinated, 1,234 de-wormed and 182 treated against other diseases bys the end of September this year. The District Director of Agriculture stated that improved seeds and animals were supplied to farmers and livestock breeders to improve their stock while 74 beehives were acquired to promote beekeeping for honey and wax production.
He stressed the importance of a proper and efficient processing and packaging of farm produce and fish and called for the provision of irrigation facilities to enhance all year round production. Mr Ansaayiri advised the people against the consumption of carcasses, which he said had been one of the major causes of death in the district.
The District Ch ief Executive, Mr James Kipo Sunyazi, said the government was committed to the creation of conditions that would promote sustained and accelerated growth to promote its policy towards the creation of a property owning democracy. He said the District Assembly would use part of its poverty alleviation funds to purchase tractors to assist farmers to increase their production.
Mr Sunyazi said the Assembly would supply farmers with improved stock and seeds for their livestock and farming activities respectively and urged them to take advantage to ensure higher productivity and accelerated poverty reduction. A total of 15 farmers were presented with awards including Wellington boots, cutlasses, bicycles and certificates.