Maize Farmers in nine farming communities in the Sunyani Municipality have appealed to the Municipal and Regional Directorates of Agriculture to assist them to control and prevent the spread of the Fall Army Worms (FAWs) destroying their farms.
The worried farmers said the FAWs have resurfaced and they anticipated that their maize farms would be completely destroyed by the pest if measures were not immediately put in place to clear them.
The farmers made the appeal during a mini-durbar on Friday at Yawsan when Mrs. Evelyn Ama Kumi Richardson, the Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) and some staff of the Assembly visited the place as part of her working visit to the Municipality.
The visit was to identify the socio-economic challenges of the communities to enable the Assembly address them accordingly.
The farmers expressed worry that the chemicals supplied to them last year for the control of the insect were not enough and that drastically reduced the amount of maize they should have harvested.
They pleaded with the Assembly to liaise with the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA) to assist them as a matter of urgency, because they had contracted loans to invest in the large acres of maize cultivation projects and must therefore reap successful harvest to be able them to repay their loans.
Mrs. Richardson assured the farmers that the Assembly would collaborate with the Municipal Directorate of MoFA to offer the necessary assistance to control the insects to prevent the destruction of the farms.
She empathised with worried farmers and expressed concern that the situation bordered on national food security because it could create food shortage and consequently famine in the country.
In all the communities the common socio-economic problems included the need for renovation of old physical educational infrastructure or building of new ones, materials for effective teaching and learning, health facilities, portable drinking water, good roads and provision of electricity and farm inputs.
The MCE gave the assurance in response to their respective requests, saying the Assembly would endeavour to provide them with the assistance to improve their living conditions.
Mr. Francis Dwomoh, an Agriculture Extension Agent of the Municipal Directorate of MoFA, advised the farmers who had detected the army worms in their farms to visit the MoFA office for chemicals to control the insect to avoid spreading to other farms.
He disclosed that some maize farmers in other communities had come out with a local strategy in controlling the army worms.
Mr. Dwomoh explained that those farmers sprayed the insect with washing powder solution early in the morning and advised the affected farmers to do same since it had been very potent and effective in killing the pest.