The Sissala East Municipal Director of Agriculture, Clement Kawuribi has tasked farmers to remain vigilant during the crop production season as the Fall Army Worm, (FAW), pests have come to stay saying “immediately the plants start emerging, you should start scouting [for the presence of fall army worms]”.
According to Mr. Kawubiri, when the presence of the worms are detected early, the farms could easily be salvaged through the use of appropriate pest control chemicals.
The Agriculture Director disclosed that this year a total of 1,207 acres of crops were affected by the FAW.
He said all 1,207 acres were salvaged due to the quick intervention of the department and the use of chemicals.
Mr. Kawubiri said the worms have moved from attacking just maize to attacking all cereals and some vegetables.
Mr Kawubiri said although the fall army worms cannot be completely eradicated, the number of cases reported reduce year after year.
He attributed the reduction to the use of approved pesticides and some natural predators who feed on the fall army worms.
These came to light when the Agriculture Department was quizzed at the 8th Meet the Press Series at Tumu in the Sissala East Municipality of the Upper West Region.
For his part, the MCE for Sissala East Municipality, Karim Nanyua said government’s Planting for Food and Jobs (PFJ) continued to help change the lives of farmers as the farmers.
Mr. Nanyua stated that in 2017, 6,433 farmers signed up for the program. In 2018, the number went down to 5,053 farmers but shot up again this year with a total registration of 7,656 farmers.
The MCE indicated that in 2018, 42,540 cashew seedlings were distributed to 693 farmers under government’s Planting for Export and Rural Development. This year, 60,500 seedlings have been distributed among 950 farmers under the same program.
On access to Water and Sanitation Hygiene (WASH) facilities, Mr. Nanyua said funds sourced from the Special Development Initiative under the one million dollars per constituency had gone into the sinking of 20 boreholes. Part of the funds has also gone into the construction of small town water systems at Nankawie, Dagbasu, Bichemboi, Kuroboi, Tafiasi and Banuto.
The MCE said awards schemes have been put in place to encourage communities stop Open Defecation. The first award was picked by Nakpawie last year. Mr Nanyua said the assessment to find this year’s winner is ongoing.
Story by Mark Smith.