A total of 12,000 new hi-tech oil palm seedlings has been distributed to 85 farmers in the Agona East District free of charge by the District Assembly under the Planting for Rural Development Programme.
The Planting for rural Development is one of the flagship Programmes rolled out for farmers, especially the youth, to entice them to go into farming and also reduce migration to urban areas and cities to look for non- existing jobs.
Mr. Dennis Armah-Frempong, District Chief Executive (DCE) for Agona East, together with Mr. Nortey Wilson, District Director of Agriculture, distributed the seedlings at the nursery site at Duakwa.
More than 20,000 hi-tech dwarf coconut seedlings had been procured from Western Region and would soon be distributed to farmers while 120,000 Cocoa seedlings had already been distributed to over 100 farmers for planting during the mid-year rainy season.
Mr. Armah-Frempong said the supply of various seedlings to farmers would serve as value chain to produce raw materials to feed factories under the one district one factory (1D1F) programme to check unemployment.
He said the inability of farmers to access loans had become a major challenge, adding that, some banks denied farmers loans due to non- payment and urged farmers to cultivate the habit of savings.
The DCE said the Assembly had rehabilitated some feeder roads in the district to enable farmers to cart their produce to marketing centers, and that, strenuous efforts were being made to reshape other roads.
Mr. Francis Botchwey, a farmer at Agona Namawura, a beneficiary of the oil palm seedlings expressed his appreciation to government for giving farmers the opportunity to expand their farms.
He said farmers had embraced the government's flagship programmes rolled out to better their living conditions and appealed for loans to reduce the financial difficulties confronting them during farming season.
Madam Ernestina Opokuwaa, a 59 year old farmer, thanked the government for the assistance and called for adequate incentives to farmers to attract the youth into farming to reduce the rate of unemployment.