Kwakehdor Farmer Group Embarks on Cassava, Rice Project

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Kwakehdor farmers at their cassava project site in Kpain, Nimba County_web.jpg

The Kwakehdor Farmer Group in Kpain Nimba County is embarking on cassava and rice project this season in an effort to revamp agricultural activities, which have been down for over two decades.

Speaking at the project site in Kpain Tuesday, April 29, the head of the group, Mr. Landra Diagor, said as they endeavor to revamp some of the agricultural activities at the Kpain Agricultural Project Site, his group will be cultivating cassava and rice this year. Diagor disclosed that they intend on covering more than five hectares of land and then would expand gradually as support comes in.

Kpain Agricultural Project site is one of the oldest agriculture sites in Liberia. In began operational in the 1950s and it was only into vegetable production.

The project site used to cover at most 600 hectares of land before to the civil war. But our Nimba County Correspondent as the result of the war, agriculture activities collapsed, land became vacant and all of site’s facilities were vandalized. He stated that the land has also been encroached upon.

In 2007, the UNMIL Bangladeshi Contingent known as Banbatt 7 supported the farming group in Kpain and they produced several tons of seeds rice.

But the project died down upon the departure of Banbatt 7 along with all their equipment, including tractors.

As they revamp the site, one challenge now facing the farming group, are livestock that are being raised by Guineans, who crossed the border to find grazing land for their animals.

They told the Daily Observer that their young cassava crops have been destroyed by cows which are managed by Fulini herdsmen.

“We are experiencing a great set back here from the cows, which roam this land. We want intervention before all our efforts go in vain,” said Esther Mehn, the woman leader.

“If this cassava farm comes up well, we will be able to harvest over 400 ‘balawalah’ bags of cassava, said James Mulbal, one of the group’s heads.

However, the Zone Chief and the Township Commissioner of Kpain, William T. Whener and William S. Belleh have assured the Kwakehdor that they will do everything possible to stop the livestock/cattle from destroying their crops.

The two elders also called on the national government to extend help to the farmers in Kpain by providing them with tractors and other farming machineries so as to help them produce more food for the nation.

“A nation should not depend on foreign country for its staple food when its staple food can be produced by itself. The only thing we need is government support,” said Township Commissioner Wehner.  

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