May 28, 2008, 5:40 AM
He noted that this initiative called for a collective effort by all and sundry to take ownership in ensuring that Vision 2016 to end rice importation was realised.
Governor Ceesay, wasspeaking to the state media recently in URR regarding the overwhelming response of the masses in the crusade, said Vision 2016 was not a new issue to the people of URR as they are well prepared to push the vision agenda in realizing the President’s dream by 2016.
According to Governor Ceesay, Vision 2016 seeks to address rice importation come 2016, and to galvanise the population in meeting this targeted vision.
Upper River Region is one region in the forefront of the race to ensure The Gambia meets its food self-sufficiency drive, he said.
According to the Governor, the Upper River Region has actively responded to the President’s pronouncement of the Vision 2016 drive, while describing the initiative as a step in the right direction, which was geared toward improving food self-sufficiency in this country and to alleviate poverty.
Governor Ceesay, however, said in some parts of the country there was a shortage of rainfall, and this has affected the crops very well. As a result of that situation, they are working on how to maintain the food that they have produced, and also to encourage the farmers to safeguard the harvested crops for the benefit of the Gambian people.
“I have cautioned the department of Agriculture through their regional directorate that they needed to have some radio talk shows regarding the produces that we are collecting, so that it would be in safe hands otherwise there are people who normally come to this country, to our “lumo” markets to buy all and take it to their areas, and later bring it back to sell it to us; which we don’t want to accept this year,” he said.
“We are putting mechanisms in place to make sure all we have produced in this country remains and is consumed in this country,” he added.
He challenged Gambians to take ownership of this vision, which was not a new issue to the people of URR, and called for more commitment toward the attainment of Vision 2016.