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NBGs harvests 500-hectare of rice at Aweil Rice Scheme

Author: Alhadi Hawari | Published: Friday, November 17, 2023

A tractor-attached harvester is driven through ripe farm at the section of Aweil Rice Scheme. (-)

Northern Bahr el Ghazal State governor on Thursday launched the harvesting of a 500-hectare rice plantation at the Aweil Rice Scheme.

Tong Akeen Ngor appeared with officials could be driving tractor-mounted harvester through a stretch of ripen rice farm and using a sickle for cutting rice stalks in pictures shared on Facebook.

Governor Akeen said the state expected to produce more than in the 2022 planting season, although he did not reveal the quantity of rice produced.

Addressing the media, he appreciated the farmers for what he describes as job well done despite the lack of support from the government.

“The production of this year is assuring to us and our aim is this scheme to be planted all,” Akeen said.

“Now am sure although there is lack of agricultural tools like tractors and other things, I want to appreciate our farmers because they managed this situation without our support to them.”

“Even the fuel is not there, and there’s no support from the government. I want to thank all the farmers again for their work well done.”

The Aweil Rice Scheme is a national project of the Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security established in 1944. It is the biggest rice farm in the country so far, stretching over about 11,000 hectares.

However, since the South Sudan government inherited the scheme upon independence, the production has been crippled and only 3,000 hectares are being cultivated.

In August 2023, the National Ministry of Agriculture and the UN’s food agencies inspected the plantation and inaugurated a research center for the project.

This comes after the scheme was revived on a minimum capacity in August 2022 with support from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, and the World Bank.

On her part, FAO representative Parul Shahida said the UN’s food agency decided to support the farmers to boost their production.

“This rice project is getting very impactful by the international level, now we are doing a small project here on this site, we support the farmers,” Shahida said.

“We support the Aweil Rice Scheme so that the farmers can do the production and I can say that another big of Aweil Rice Scheme is under cooking, I hope that soon you will get it to organize Aweil Rice Scheme systematically.”




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