SUAKOKO, Bong County – The Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) through its Rural Economic Transformation Project (RETRAP) has presented a brand new 75 Horsepower tractor and three Yamaha motorbikes to the Central Agricultural Research Institute (CARI) in Suakoko, Bong County.
The support is meant to strengthen the institutional capacity of CARI. The Presentation was done on September 30, 2022.
Making the presentation on behalf of the Ministry, Tarnue N. Jeke, Operations Manager of the RETRAP said the MOA will always work with CARI to improve its capacity.
“We are partners in this sector with the same desire to drive our beneficiaries in the direction of good agriculture practices and climate-smart agriculture that will see their productivity increase and earn them more income,” Mr. Jeke said.
“For us to achieve that, institutions, like CARI, involved with studying and recommending ways that our farmers can improve their activities need to be fully supported. That is why we, as a development partner with funding from the World Bank and through the Ministry of Agriculture, are here to provide additional support to the research institute.”
He also admonished the administration of CARI to properly maintain the equipment to ensure it serves the institute for a longer period.
Receiving the equipment on behalf of CARI, the Administrative Assistant to the Director General Sundesco Clarke extended gratitude to the Ministry of Agriculture through the project, noting that the donation was timely.
“For more than ten years, CARI has not had access to such a brand-new tractor. To compound that dilemma, the only tractor at the institute is facing a serious mechanical fault that has caused a major breakdown in our operations. This could not have come at a better time”, he said.
He noted that CARI was excited that there was now a solution to the problem of tilling the soil as the result of the availability of the tractor and pledged the institution’s commitment to maintaining the equipment.
In separate remarks, the CARI project focal person of the RETRAP Jobson Momo disclosed that CARI is also expected to benefit from solar lighting facilities at the living quarters and pathways of the institute. Currently, the lack of electricity for scientists and their families residing in the CARI compound is a serious challenge that affects research activities after the closure of the administrative office each evening. The provision of solar systems will complement continuous work by the scientists who are engaged in a lot of research activities beyond the usual working hours.
The RETRAP, which seeks to develop or enhance competitiveness and market access through productive alliances as well as strengthening agri-marketing and engaging in road infrastructure investments, is implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture through the World Bank Project Implementation Unit (PIU). The project targets 60,000 beneficiaries in the cassava, rubber, vegetable, pig, and poultry value chains.