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FOA Rep. tours farming projects in Gbarpolu County

The Country Representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has ended a day-long field visit to UAE-funded projects in Gbarpolu County.

The project, entitled: “Promoting Increased Resilience and Sustainable Income Generation, Food Security and Nutrition for Rural Women,” is funded by the United Arab Emirates, and implemented by the FAO in partnership with the Ministries of Agriculture and Internal Affairs.

Speaking during the field visit, the head of the Tarpoinah Successful Women Cooperative Society in Gbarma District, Gbarpolu County, Madam Mariatou Njie said, one of the problems FAO has observed is lack of mechanization because the farm is small.

She said if farmers want to expand production and make it sustainable, FAO has to continue to provide agro-machinery purposely to facilitate their farming work. 

“We are also trying to see how we can link you up with market,” Madam Njie said; adding: “We at FAO believe that the foundation of your success is through cooperative, and I am happy you have already been certificated.”

Women fish in a fishpond

She expressed optimism that the Takpoimah Successful Women Cooperative Society will make progress in its endeavor and encouraged the women to enlarge their farms to meet commercial and self-sufficient scales.

In remarks, Deputy Agriculture Minister George Forpoh said the project came to fruition through the efforts of President George Weah when visited the United Arab Emirates during which he requested assistance from the Crown Prince His Highness Sheikh Humaid bin Rashid Al Nuaimi for Liberian women.

Minister Forpoh noted that the FAO is only be used as vehicle through which fund is being transferred to the Government of Liberia. 

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He expressed hope that the Liberian government will do more in lobbying for more assistance for the benefit of the Liberian people.

Dr. Forpoh appealed to the women to encourage young people in the county into the project to train them on the knowledge they (women) have acquired from the FAO and the Agriculture Ministry

 Earlier, the national agronomist at the FAO, Ambrose Forpoh, disclosed that the project is being implemented in 24 farming groups in Gbarpolu, Bong, Lofa, Montserrado and Nimba counties, respectively.

He also disclosed the projects have 1,966 beneficiaries in value chain vegetable, low rice poultry and inland fish-farming at a cost of US$2.5 million. 

Madam Njie also visited Yankaya Women Cooperative Society where beneficiaries there harvested large quantity of fish from their integrated fishpond.

The field trip also took the FAO Country Representative to poultry and farming sites in Gbarma, Gbarpolu County.

Accompanying her on the field tour were Madam Leelia Andrews, Deputy Agriculture Minister, Madam Regina Sokan-Teah, Register General of the Cooperative Development Agency, Ma Kebeh Monger, National President of the Liberia National Rural Women, Mohamed A. M Kamara, Assistant Director for Communion Farming at the Ministry of Internal Affairs, among others.

Meanwhile, the FAO Country Representative and delegation have already embarked on the second leg of the field trip to Bong and Nimba. Editing by Jonathan Browne

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