-Describes agriculture as powerful instrument to reduce poverty
Bong County Electoral District #2 Representative Prince Moye, also Deputy Speaker of the 54th Legislature, says he is interested in using opportunities to expand his agro-business to create more jobs for young people in the county.
Moye said his decision is based on the fact that many of the locals have lived their lives on subsistence farming and through this, they were able to send some of their children including the lawmaker himself to school.
He told the Daily Observer on Friday, October 19 that he sees agriculture as the foundation of a prosperous Liberian society, and so, he wants the government to invest more in sustaining and further developing the sector.
“With the right systems of cultivation and agricultural expansion,” Rep. Moye said, Liberia could once again be a premier exporter of rice to the Mano River Basin.
He said that the government cannot solely address the agriculture situation even if policy-makers call for a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) with stakeholders in the sector. “It is not about selling, the more hands we have in agriculture, the bigger the market. There is a need for PPP where other people can access products we have in the market,” Moye said.
He said that Liberia’s agricultural-based economy is still dominated by subsistence production, and characterized by low crop productivity, but suggested that with government’s intervention, farmers would regain their pride.
“Liberians consume millions of metric tons of rice every year, with a significant portion of its consumption needs being sourced from imports, so the government needs to go back to the policies of the 60s and 70s where farmers were given loans to improve on their farms,” the Lawmaker said.
Rep. Moye admitted that access to market remains a challenge for most smallholder farmers in Liberia, and bad road networks, lack of storage facilities, and lack of market links between farmers and buyers are among factors hampering the farmers’ growth.