As the youngest region in Ghana, Upper West is noted for farming. Ranging from cash crops to plantations.
However the difficulty in getting tractor services is enormous. Madam Zenabu Seidu a rice farmer in Nakori, a suburb of the Wa Municipality indicated to radio Waa news that, last year she harvested only a bowl of rice from an acre due to late plough. Madam Zenabu added that, contrary to government’s promise of extending tractor services to farmers on year bases their (farmers) condition remain unaltered as she puts it “we are really suffering in accessing tractor services.”
The case was no different from the Wa East District. Danaa Kala a former Assembly member of Bayiri Electoral area disclosed that, the main occupation of the people of Bayiri and its surrounding communities is farming but they lose their investment to drought due to late plough.
On his part, Mohammed Yakubu said “for two weeks now, I have been running around the nook and cranny of the region searching for a tractor for my people in kpaglahi.”
However Tuurusung Women Farmers group in Jonga is among the lucky ones, who had an early plough. Meri Yakubu, the leader of the group who was grateful to 18th April Agro Co.Ltd said the company offered them a tractor albeit for a fee.
To further explain the plight of the people, the District Chief Executive for the Wa East District, Hon Jotie Moses said the District is vast but with only one tractor stationed at the District capital (Funsi). The Chief Executive called on farmers to form groups and upon request for the tractor service, it will be given.
Region Director of Agricultural, Mr Francis Susu Yeboah said the Regional office had no tractor but he is aware government is working on getting them some tractors to support farmers.
Northern Ghana has only one farming season, which starts in May and ends in August and it is believed by farmers that ploughing ends in the middle of June anytime further than that will affect the yield negatively.
The collective appeal to government is to support smallholder farmers in the Upper West Region with tractors to aide their farming.