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Business News of Friday, 14 July 2017

Source: Mark Boye

Ejura MP expresses worry over armyworm invasion

The Member of Parliament (MP) for Ejura-Sekyeredumase Constituency in the Ashanti Region, Alhaji Muhammad Bawah Braimah, has expressed concern over the recent army worm invasion across the country.

He said its worrisome the manner at which armyworms had invaded farms in the country, with his constituency not left behind.

Mr. Braimah noted that at a time when the ruling NPP government was championing a campaign dubbed ‘Planting for Food and Jobs,’ it would have been prudent if immediate steps are taken to curtail the armyworms.

“The worms are destroying the crops, and as a result, it obviously will affect the end of year yields and for that matter, I want to seize this opportunity to highlight this through the media for government to be aware, so that major steps will be taken to try and curb it,” he said.

He therefore appealed to government to nib in the bud the armyworm menace by doubling efforts to control the armyworms from further destroying farms in his area.

According to the MP, he has visited some of the farms which the worms have destroyed, leaving the farmers in a total state of confusion, as they weep over the investments made, but which have gone waste.

Alhaji Braimah said, Ejura-Sekyeredumasi and its adjoining communities farms are where the fall armyworm has invaded fields of food crops including maize, cassava, yam, and other staple crop and vegetable throughout the Municipality.

He added that, though the Ministry of Food and Agriculture has done its best in the fight to control the pests by spraying the farms, but more needed to be done.

"The pest is still devastating crops and so far impossible to eradicate and that food insecurity will worsen if there is no immediate solution.

"What is of particular concern is that the army worms are affecting every farm, especially the main producers of maize, cassava and others," he added.

The Ministry for Food and Agriculture and Plant Protection and Regulatory Services are the departments in charge of controlling pests of such nature.

The MP stated that, there was the need for the Agriculture Ministry to be more proactive in taking it up, especially, when, as a country, we just launched ‘Planting for Food and Jobs’.

"If we do not control such menace, then I think that the efforts of our farmers and government would come to nothing, in terms of food production."