Monrovia, (PMU-MoA) – November 10, 2019; Acting Agriculture Minister Precious K. Tetteh, at the head of a high power ministerial delegation from the Ministry of Agriculture has concluded a two day working visit to agriculture projects in Bong and Nimba Counties. The delegation which included the Deputy Minister for Planning and Development, Robert K. Fagan, the legal Council Atty. Johnstone McGill, Tree Crops Resource Director, Gregory Taplah and Asset Officer, Emmanuel Grualee visited the Central Agriculture Research Institute in Bong County and the National Seed Garden in Beeplay, Nimba County.
Speaking to staff at the two centers, Acting Minister Tetteh reassured that government is working with international and local partners to develop the cocoa value chain which is aimed at improving the yields and providing the market where farmers can engage in profitable agriculture commercial activities. She said, “with the improvement in the sector, cocoa farmers in Liberia will be able to compete positively with their counterparts in neighboring countries to attract foreign investment”
She said the government is adopting a holistic approach in tackling the growing need for investment in the agriculture sector and providing the needed resources for smallholder farmers to increase production and improve their market shares. “Along with the cocoa sector which is expected to benefit over 18,000 cocoa farmers in Nimba and Lofa counties under the Tree Crops Extension Project, the government is also making frantic effort to improve the rice sector to address the growing need for food and nutrition sufficiency in all parts of the country”, she added.
Minister Tetteh commended the staff at CARI and the National Seed Garden for meeting their monthly target of 20,000 polythene bags for new cocoa seedlings which is expected to be planted later this month. The seedling will be distributed to farmers who have been identified and registered with cocoa farms that needs rehabilitation, revitalization and replanting. The Tree Crops Extension Project will also provide temporary employment for over 1,000 Liberians in Nimba and Lofa counties, while about 250, kilometers of reads will be rehabilitated in the two counties to give farmers easy access to their farms and market.