Mr Francis Ennor, the Upper East Regional Director of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) has allayed the fears of farmers confronted with armyworm infestation on their farms.

He has also given the assurance that there was enough chemicals to control and curb any infestation.

Mr Ennor said the Directorate was fully equipped with viable chemicals to fight any Armyworm infestation and all district offices of Agriculture were empowered with chemicals to support farmers who reported the presence of the worms on their farms.

He advised farmers to contact any MoFa extension staff working with them in their communities and the District Offices for direction and acquisition of the needed chemicals to control the Army worm on their farms.

Speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Bolgatanga, the Director urged farmers to start spraying their maize crops two weeks after germination so as to keep the worms and other harmful insects away from their farms.

“Do not wait until you are overwhelmed with the problem before you buy the wrong chemicals from the open market, instead contact the Agriculture officers for the appropriate chemicals and assistance early or as soon as you notice the worms on your farm”, he told the farmers. He also advised MoFA staff to report and retire returns on time and take delivery of more chemicals for the season’s farming activities.

The Director said he was busy during the farming period observing some farms as part of his monitoring exercise, while the officers were sensitising the farmers on the appropriate measures to take to improve production.

Responding to questions on adequacy of extension staff to assist farmers with the needed services, Mr Ennor indicated that government this year employed and posted 135 extension officers to the Upper East Regional Directorate to beef up manpower gaps and in addition, more NABCo employees were attached to the Directorate to enhance extension services in the region.

He said all the personnel were posted to the districts and 16 of the extension staff were currently providing services in the Builsa North and South districts that used to have just one extension staff each.

The Builsa area has vast farmlands under cultivation, rice in the valleys and sorghum and maize on the upland.

Source: GNA