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FAO Liberia and Agriculture Ministry Pledge Support to Farmers in Lofa County

Foya, Lofa County, May 19, 2024: The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) Liberia, represented by Bintia Stephen Tchicaya, along with Liberia’s Minister of Agriculture, J. Alexander Nutah, embarked on a visit to various farms in Lofa County over the weekend. The objective was to assess the progress made by farmers in advancing Liberia’s journey towards food security.

The visit to Lofa followed a significant milestone where Tchicaya and Minister Nutah concluded a two-day event in Gbarnga, Bong County, to validate the National Agriculture Development Plan (NADP), crucial for Liberia’s agricultural development and food security.

Invited by the Ministry of Agriculture to participate in the journey to Lofa, FAO Representative Tchicaya seized the opportunity to showcase one of the institution’s numerous initiatives supporting agricultural cooperatives in Foya, Lofa County.

Accompanied by their respective delegations, Tchicaya and Minister Nutah visited the Mayor River Women Initiative, a female-dominated farmer cooperative established in 2017 and led by Madam Tewa Blama.

The FAO has been instrumental in supporting this cooperative through the UAE-funded project titled: “Promoting Increased Resilience and Sustainable Income Generation, Food Security and Nutrition for Rural Women (GCP/LIR/028/UAE).” The project provided assistance in the form of improved rice seeds, essential inputs such as power tillers, mini rice harvesters, mini rice threshers, a rice milling machine, and a de-stoner. Furthermore, capacity-building efforts included training in improved crop husbandry practices, business management skills, and the establishment of village savings and loan associations.

In February 2023, a representative from the Mayor River Women Initiative participated in a week-long farmer exchange visit to the Center Songhai in the Republic of Benin, benefiting from valuable insights shared during the exchange.

Expressing gratitude to the farmers during their first encounter, Agriculture Minister Nutah acknowledged the significant contribution of the Mayor River Women Initiative to Liberia’s agricultural sector. He assured them that the Ministry of Agriculture is actively working on addressing the challenges faced by farmers in the county.

In a pledge of continued support, FAO Representative Tchicaya commended the initiative of the Mayor River Women Initiative, emphasizing its crucial role in combating food insecurity in Liberia and promoting sustainable food production.

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“We are here today to express our appreciation for the outstanding work you do for the people of Liberia. Your contributions as a farming group are commendable, and FAO highly recognizes this. Our support will remain steadfast as we collaborate towards achieving food security in Liberia,” added FAO Representative Bintia Tchicaya.

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