35.5 tons of farm produce donated to NDMA
Tuesday, May 15, 2012
The Ministry of Youth and Sports Thursday donated 35.5 tons of farm produce derived from their district youth farms to the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA) through the Ministry of Agriculture to help ease the crop failure. The presentation ceremony was held at the Independence Stadium in Bakau.
Speaking at the occasion, Alieu K Jammeh, the minister of Youth and Sports disclosed that the creation of the district youth farms started last year. According to him, the Ministry embarked on a vigorous nation wide campaign to sensitise both the regional governors and youths about the rational behind the youth farms and also for every district to create farms. The initiative, he said, started with President Jammeh, who provided them farm inputs to start and also the technical assistance they received from the Ministry of Agriculture and NARI.
Minister Jammeh, said the donation is meant to support the National Disaster Management Agency to assist the farmers with foodstuff to respond to the food crisis.This year, he added, they want to create 100 district youth farms in the country. He however appealed to the private sector to support them so that next year they will be able to produce more. He thanked the regional governors, alkalolu, chiefs and the youth for their support towards this initiative.
For his part, Solomon Owens, the minister of Agriculture, said it is the mandate of the Ministry of Agriculture to produce food, noting that young people should be encouraged to be actively involved in farming. He added that if agriculture is only left in the hands of the old it will gradually go down. He thanked President Jammeh and the Ministry of Youth and Sports for the bold initiative taken in creating the youth farms.
Receiving the gifts, the executive director of the NDMA, Essa Khan said his institution is closely working with the Ministry of Agriculture and the United Nations system to address the current food crisis. He said that the government is addressing the food crisis but more resources are needed to support this initiative. Khan thanked the Ministry of Youth and Sports for the support and assured them that the gift will reach the beneficiaries.
Author: Momodou Faal & Bintou K.B Janneh