The Sekyere Kumawu District Assembly in a joint partnership with the District Directorate of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), is implementing a novelty district-wide local rice production project.
The goal of the GH¢20,000.00 project, being funded through the Assembly’s Common Fund, is to create employment for the teeming youth to help curb rural-urban migration in the area.
Mr Samuel Addai Agyekum, the District Chief Executive (DCE), speaking to the Ghana News Agency in an interview at Kumawu, said the venture was also focused on scaling up local production to partner the government boost food security and reduce the importation of rice.
The project is targeting all farmers in the area to engage them to prioritize the cultivation and processing, to boost their incomes.
The DCE said a rice field demonstration farm to train target farmers, would be sited at the Dadease and that Agricultural Extension Officers, who are going to receive special allowances from the Assembly’s budget, have been earmarked for the project.
“These, together with the free distribution of rice seedlings to farmers, would form part of the funding component,” he added.
Mr Agyekum said the District was implementing the initiative to take advantage of its huge economic potential for agribusiness and agriculture, since that sector alone contributed over 90 per cent to the Assembly’s Internally Generated Funds (IGF). “The District scored 119 per cent of IGF last year and was ranked the third in the Ashanti Region in IGF generation,” adding that the revenue accruing from agriculture and agribusiness, attributed to that feat.
Mr. Agyekum spoke of the need to partner JICA to leverage on its modernized but simple technologies, practical trainings and technical know-how, to achieve maximum success in the venture.