By: D. Patrick Tokpah, Bong Reporter
The National Cassava Producer Union of Liberia (NCPUL) President Mr. Emmanuel S. L. Tamba said the Union is actively working to ensure it meets the production of 1,000metric-tons of cassava for export to china through Green Gold Liberia.
Addressing scores of farmers at the union’s headquarters office in Melekie Town, Electoral District #3 Bong County, the union’s president underscored the need for government and partners to direct support to mitigate the shortage of food on the Liberian market.
The NCPUL President said it is not impossible for Liberia to process and export cassava like other countries for the international market; noting that Liberia can do it only if the required support is provided. The expected exportation of chipped cassava to China is based on the union’s frantic desire to see Liberian cassava farmers self-reliant and productive.
Mr. Tamba indicated that the National Cassava Producer Union of Liberia is an agriculture based organization established to work mainly with people involved in cassava farming across Liberia, the union cultivates its own farmland in each county, provides training to farmers, as well as purchase cassava from the farmers, among other things.
He believes that with the support of government and partners towards the sustainability of the project, poverty and crimes rate in the country will reduce by providing employment for vulnerable young people.
“I want to see cassava farmers building their own house, owning whatever they want in Liberia, contributing to the growth and development of this country.”
Mr. Tamba also stressed that some of the key priorities facing the union are mobility to transport purchased cassava from farmers to the processing plant, cassava chips machines responsible to chip cassava and others.
According to him, the union presently has people to slash the cassava for drying but the process is slow and they need urgent assistance to lessen the burden of the contractors and increase mass production for export to other countries besides China.
Mr. Tamba also revealed that the union strives to make its first cassava chips shipment possible to China in the middle part of June of 2019, the issue of mobility, cassava chipping machines, cassava dryer, solar-drivers and other needed support remain a challenge.
President Tamba in a recent interview with this paper noted that there is no reason why Cassava farmers should not be able to send their children to any school of their choice, seek any proper medication, especially with cassava being Liberia’s second stable food. He promised to ensure that cassava farmers across Liberia have reasons to celebrate and smile like any other person that is jobbing in Liberia.
Mr. Tamba maintains that in spite of the mounting challenges and abandonment cassava farmers have faced over hundred years, the NCPUL is doing everything possible to restore the lost hope of cassava farmers in Liberia’s fifteen (15) counties.