50 extension workers trained in LRR
Tuesday, April 17, 2012
At least 50 Agricultural extension workers from across the country on Thursday, 12 April 2012 concluded a three-day sensitisation forum on livestock and horticultural techniques held at the Agricultural Rural Farmers’ Training Centre in Jenoi village, Jarra West District of the Lower River Region (LRR).
Speaking on the occasion, Musa Dampha, the deputy director of Communication, Extension and Education Services at the Ministry of Agriculture, commended President Jammeh and his government for making agriculture a top priority, noting that government is more committed to the development of agriculture than ever before.
He spoke at length on the significance of the forum, while stressing on the need for attitudinal change. According to him, in order for food self-sufficiency to be attained there is need for attitudinal change and show of commitments towards the agricultural sector.
He thanked the Livestock and Horticultural Development Project (LHDP) for funding the training and urged them to disseminate the skills and knowledge acquired during the training.
For his part, Sheriff PJ Sanyang, the assistant monitoring and evaluation officer, deputising for the acting director of LHDP, Ousman D. Jarjue, gave an overview of LHDP. He informed that LHDP is a multi-million Dalasi project funded by The Gambia government, International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and African Development Bank. He added that The Gambia government initiated this project as one of the means of achieving Vision 2020.
The LHDP, he noted focuses mainly on the development of horticulture and livestock commodities by adopting a value chain approach so as to address the constraints affecting the agriculture sector.
The project, Sanyang went on, is expected to increase the volume of marketed horticultural produce, the number of poultry as well as the number of heads of small ruminants in the country
He went further to disclose that the LHDP project is expected to directly benefit a population of about 3,000 households across the country and that the project would also benefit the tourism industry through the supply of meat and vegetables to hotels in The Gambia.
Speaking earlier, Falalo Touray, the director of the Regional Agricultural Directorate in LRR disclosed that the forum is part of series of ongoing training sessions meant to build the capacities of agricultural extension workers to enhance agricultural production in the country.
He described the initiative taken by the Ministry of Agriculture and LHDP to strengthen and equip participants with techniques to improve agricultural production, as a positive step, saying the move would go a long way towards the development of agriculture, especially in livestock and horticulture, in The Gambia.
Touray went on to challenge the participants to take the training with seriousness while urging them to utilise the skills and knowledge acquired in the training in their various work places.
Author: Salifu M.Touray in LRR