Stakeholders trained on installation of air craft

Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Africa Emergency Locust Project (AELP) on Monday began a five-day training for various stakeholders on the installation of aircraft and mounting vehicle sprayers.

The training, which brought together over fifty participants, was held at the Banjul International Airport.

Speaking at the opening forum, the Project Coordinator Shiekh Tijan Sosseh said the global objective of the Africa Emergency Locust Project is to strengthen the capacity of The Gambia, to be able to control and mitigate future locust invasion.

Noting that this is the last activity that the project is supposed to be implemented under Component A, which is the emergency locust control and management, he said, the AELP has successfully accomplished another sub-component, which is improving pesticide management. He added that the AELP has already constructed pesticide storage facilities at national and regional levels.

"In 2004 and 2005, when The Gambia was invaded by locust, it was very tough to hire aircraft from other countries because so many countries within the sub-region were also invaded," he said.

Sosseh commended President Jammeh for his efforts in securing two aircraft for The Gambia, which he said, are jointly managed by the African Emergency Locust Project and the Gambia Civil Aviation Authority.

He expressed profound gratitude to the management of the GCAA for their collaboration and for making the event a successful one.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Kekoi Kuyateh, the Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture described the training as an important stage of the implementation of the AELP projects. He advised the participants to take the training seriously, as according to him, locust invasion is a very serious thing.

Others speakers included Yassin Khan, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer, who gave an overview account of the project.

Author: Abdoulie Nyockeh