By: Dawda Baldeh
President Adama Barrow leader of the National People’s Party (NPP) has promised to end rice importation in The Gambia if re-elected as president in December. He made these remarks at a campaign in Fula Bantang Village, Central River Region (CRR) and Jahanka Village, CRR north.
Barrow stated that his government will invest heavily in rice production to ensure the country produces enough rice. “We have eighty million dollars ($80m) for agriculture,” he said. Adding that the project will construct roads, storage facilities, fertilizers, create new irrigation systems to ensure year-round cultivation of rice.
President Barrow was responding to concerns raised by various villages that expressed the need for more development in agriculture. Various people highlighted the high cost of living while urging the government to help regulate the price of basic products.
Among the key issues highlighted was the need for yearly rice production especially the ‘Jakhally Pacharr’ which many believed will sustain the country’s rice consumption if properly managed.
President Barrow gave a solemn promise that if he is re-elected in December, he will end rice importation within two to three years.
In his meeting at Jahanka Village on Wednesday night, residents called on the President to assist them through the provision of good health facilities, schools, roads, regulation of price high among others.
The head of state said that agriculture is one of the key areas that he will focus on if re-elected, assuring farmers of his government’s commitment to eradicating poverty in the country. He further stated that his government will provide sufficient farming implements to make the fight against poverty easier.