May 27, 2009, 10:27 AM
The 2012 National Farmers’ Conference under way in Janjangbureh, Central River Region, should serve as a great opportunity for the Gambian farmers.
The two-day meeting is expected to attract more than 500 farmers, key players in agriculture, government officials and representatives from the private sector.
It is expected to discuss issues, challenges and the way forward for agricultural development in The Gambia, in the context of a growing national and global food crises.
The forum should help map out strategies in helping farmers address major challenges affecting the cultivation and marketing of their produce.
Gambian farmers, over the years, have been experiencing a lot of challenges, ranging from poor distribution of rainfall, lack of access to soft loans, to lack of farm implements, and so on.
We do hope that the conference would help farmers to address some of these problems; hence it is very timely and relevant.
It is our firm conviction that the delegates at the conference will discuss the challenges facing the entire farming community, in an open and transparent manner.
The forum, we understand is the first ever, should also help farmers know the government development programmes, particularly those relating to agriculture, as captured in the current Programme for Growth and Employment, PAGE.
We hope that the recommendations and resolutions that will come out of the conference would not just be another conference resolution to be thrown into the office drawers.
Holding such a forum is long overdue, and we hope that the outputs of the conference will be well considered, so as to move the country’s agriculture sector forward.
As we have always said in this newspaper, prioritising agriculture is the only way out for The Gambia.