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LHDP to train over 800 horticultural farmers

May 17, 2010, 12:27 PM | Article By: Abdoulie Nyockeh

Ousman D. Jarju, horticulture specialist of the Livestock and Horticulture Development Project under the Ministry of Agriculture has disclosed that the LHDP project is targeting to train over 800 horticultural farmers countrywide, on the control of pesticide in their horticultural gardens.

Mr. Jarju made this statement in an interview with our reporter in his office at Abuko over the weekend. He noted that the reason being that women's are key in horticultural production, and as such the project deems it necessary to build the capacities of the farmers in a bid to encourage them to participate in horticultural development.

According to him, the project is targeting 10 gardens in LRR and CRR South and 5 gardens in CRR North. He said these are gardens that the project will assess and rehabilitate and their intention is to rehabilitate some in LRR, and CRR South. He added that currently plans are underway to identify gardens that are supposed to be rehabilitated by the project.

He also stated that women play a major role in the production of horticulture and are major producers of horticultural vegetable in The Gambia. Noting that their participation will contribute immensely in improving their livelihood, he said no country can develop without Agriculture, which is the backbone of any country's economy.

Jarjue implored all farmers particularly the women to participate fully in horticultural gardens, which, he said, is very significant.

He also revealed that the Livestock and Horticultural Development Project is targeting ten boreholes for the communities countrywide, adding that any community that is interested must have an area of five hectares or above.

According to Mr. Jarju, the project is also looking at the marketing constraints of vegetable production and based on that observation, the project will build  market stalls in various locations in the country, mainly Basse, Brikamaba, Kuntaur and Farafenni. He disclosed that two markets have already been built in Western Region and Barra.

He added that the project is also planning to secure two vehicles that will transport vegetables from the gardens into the market, adding that the issues of transporting will soon be resolved.

He said the project is also looking at the pest and disease constraints in vegetable production and based on that, the project is planning to engage farmers in training which, he noted, will upgrade their capacity to overcome some of these challenges, adding that LHDP project would provide inputs for farmers at no cost.